22 June, 2021

India's Malnourished Children Find Hope

India's Malnourished Children Find Hope
IT'S been 25 years since Dr Samir Chaudhuri threw up a lucrative job offer from XLRI, Jamshedpur, to start the Child In Need Institute (CINI) in Thakurpukur on the outskirts of Calcutta.From a tiny, makeshift clinic attached to a convent run by an Australian nun, also a nutritionist, Chaudhuri's concern for the und-erprivileged malnourished Indian child today has translated into a multi-pronged organisation add ressing all aspects of women and child healthcare .

"South Asia is the world's largest repository of alnour-ished children," says Chaudhuri, " and, in India, 50 per cent are malnourished." Chaudhuri attributes this to what he calls the generational effect wherein a malnourished girl child grows into a small woman, married off early and then delivers a small child of about 2.5 kg. "Eighty percent of our brain growth occurs from conception till two years of age and one of three children in India today is born with malnutrition," he explains.So in India "we're breeding a generation of idiots while only 50 per cent are growing nor-mally". Most health programmes, he...

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