SC reserves verdict on scheme for looking after pregnant women

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New Delhi, Oct 23 (UNI) The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict on the issue of proper implementation of Janani Suraksha Yojana(JSY), meant for looking after poor pregnant women.

A bench comprising Justices Arijit Pasayat and S H Kapadia, however, asked the government whether under the new scheme, which has replaced the earlier National Maternity Benefit Scheme(NMBS), the cap of providing financial assistance only upto two children has been removed and it runs counter to the national policy of population control.

Under the NMBS, women belonging to below poverty line(BPL) category were entitled to financial aid of Rs 500 per child upto two children, while under the JSY scheme, this limitation of two children has been done away with.

The court also told the government that prima facie there seemed to be large scale diversion of funds provided for the upliftment of the anganwadi workers.

Very few states have been able to fully implement the scheme and make the sanctioned anganwadis functional, despite the orders of the Supreme Court.

Average implementation of the scheme is about 71 per cent and in case of Chandigarh it is 0 per cent.

The court made it clear that the JSY can not be permitted as it runs counter to the family planning programme of the government, which lays emphasis on limiting the size of the family only upto two children.

UNI

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