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“Breast-feeding must be a child’s right”

Special Correspondent



Syeda Hamid

NEW DELHI: Syeda Hamid, Planning Commission member, has suggested that breast-feeding, immunisation and nutrition be treated as child rights.

The government should consider extending maternity leave to women to ensure breast-feeding for at least up to six months, necessary for a physically and emotionally healthy child.

She was addressing a consultation on a legal framework for protection of the rights of children in the age group 0-6, organised by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights here on Monday.

Ms. Hamid said the protection and welfare of the children would be at centre stage of the 11th Plan what with a number of initiatives being taken.

Minister of State for Women and Child Welfare Renuka Chowdhury asked the Planning Commission to consider a significant increase for child nutrition under the Integrated Child Development Scheme.

The government, in partnership with the private sector, would take up a campaign to sensitise people to the rights of children and create awareness.

Briefing reporters, Shantha Sinha, chairperson of the Child Rights Commission, said the participants at the meeting would discuss the core issues and make recommendations on including them in the legal framework.

This is to ensure essential services which enabled children to have access to health, nutrition, care and protection.

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