Residents Stand up to Corrupt Anganwadi Contractor

Under the Integrated Child Development Scheme, Anganwadis which are an all-encompassing health care centre were established in 1975. Its goals are vital and comprehensive: to combat child nutrition and hunger, to provide basic health care, and to offer pre-school education. The main beneficiaries are young children, teenage girls, pregnant women and nursing mothers. Thus it is a vital resource for otherwise cut off rural residents. Residents of Jodibahal village however are not receiving access to this facility. Call to Action: You can help. We need your support to put pressure on the authorities to finish building the Anganwadi. Please call: Prashant Panda, Block Development Officer, Lahunipara block, Sundargarh district, Odisha, Tel: +919439026276 VV Correspondent Purnachandra Nayak interviews Jogeswar Kunanara from Jodibahal village, Khuantgaon panchayat, Lahunipara block, Sundargarh district Odisha whose granddaughter is having to travel over 1km to go to the nearest Anganwadi health center. Building work for the Anganwadi Centre started 2009 but due to government negligence work has still not been completed. This is making it difficult for children between the ages of 3-5 years old who are having to travel through dangerous terrain 1 km to the nearby village Gadapalli center to access medical services. In other villages building work has started and already been completed whilst the residents of Jodibahal village are still waiting for their Anganwadi building to be finished. A frustrated resident Umesh Chandra Nayak explains, “I informed the GOP (Gram Panchayat Officer), and BDO (Block Development Officer) about this.” But nothing has been done till date. The main reason for the delay is due to a contractor who was using bad material to construct the Anganwadi and when residents protested he left. “Had the contractor worked properly the cement and plaster would not have come off. He was mixing more sand with less cement. We opposed and he left the work. Now they are giving only false assurances to finish it up,” an elderly resident informs our Community Correspondent. All is not lost. Through similar case, Community Correspondent Sunita, our Community Correspondent in Rajasthan managed to end corruption with her video. This goes to show just how powerful a community’s voice teamed with a camera is. This is why your contribution is essential. Help the pregnant and expecting mothers and children of Jodibahal village receive their Anganwadi. ACT NOW! Watch more videos like this by clicking on this link. Written by Manjinder Singh Sidhu

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