National Action Plan for Children, 2016

28/1/2017 683 Social Issues | Disadvantaged Groups | View Recent Current Affairs

  •  National Action Plan for Children, 2016 (NPAC) was launched on National Girl Child Day. The NPAC has been developed by the Ministry of Women & Child Development.

It seeks to ensure the following:

  • The Action Plan has four key priority areas; survival, health and nutrition; education and development; protection and participation.
  • The NPAC defines objectives, sub-objectives, strategies, action points and indicators for measuring progress under the four key priority areas and also identifies key stakeholders for the implementation of different strategies.
  • The plan also puts focus on new and emerging concerns for children such as online child abuse, children affected by natural and man-made disasters and climate change, etc.
  • The strategies and action points largely draw upon the existing programmes and schemes of various Ministries/Departments. However, for new and emerging issues related to children; it also suggests formulation of new programmes and strategies, as required.
  • The plan takes into account the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and provides a roadmap towards achieving them though co-ordination and convergence with different stakeholders.
  • The National Policy for Children (2013) provides for formation of a National Co-ordination and Action Group (NCAG) under the Ministry of Women and Child Development to coordinate and implement the plan and monitor the progress with other Ministries concerned as its members.

Analysis:

  • India is a young country with 472 million children. Children in the age group 0-18 years constitute 39 per cent of the country’s total population. An analysis of age-wise distribution reveals that 29.5 per cent of children are aged 0-5 years, 33 per cent are aged 6-11 years, 16.4 per cent are 12- 14 years and 21 per cent are 15-18 years respectively. The majority of India’s children (73 per cent) live in rural areas.
  • The declining child sex ratio has been a cause of concern for India, which has steeply dropped from 945 girls per 1000 boys in 1991 to 918 girls per 1000 boys in 2011. It is attributed largely to female foeticide as well as neglect of girl children. The sex ratio is slightly better in rural areas in comparison to urban areas. The child sex ratio has declined from 935 to 905 in urban areas between 1991 to 2011 whereas it has declined from 948 to 923 in rural areas.
  • According to Census 2011, there are more than 7.8 million children with disabilities, constituting approximately 2 per cent of the total child population. The majority of them (58 per cent) are in the 10+ age group.
  • India is among countries at high risk of damage from natural hazards, and is now increasing facing ill-effects of climate change. Over the last decade, China, the United States, the Philippines, Indonesia and India constitute together the top 5 countries that are most frequently hit by natural disasters. There is dire need in India to work on the growth and development of children.

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