New Delhi: Less than fifty per cent of the Anganwadi Centers (AWCs) in the country have toilets, according to Women and Child Development Ministry.
The Ministry said more than 20,000 were built it under Swachh Bharat Mission over the past one year. According to the data provided by the Ministry, out of 12,74,831 AWCs only 6,29,541 (49.38 per cent) have toilets.
"The construction and upgradation of AWC buildings, as approved for the 12th five year plan period, is an on-going activity. Provision of a toilet is in-built in the AWC buildings approved for construction," a senior Ministry official said.
Delhi, Chandigarh, Lakshadweep, Uttrakhand and Nagaland have AWCs with hundred percent toilets facilities. There 12,87,851 AWCs in existence, out of 14,00,000 sanctioned by the government.
According to state-wise data, there are 12 states where less than 50 per cent of AWCs have toilets. These include Andhra Pradesh (37.38%), Telangana (21.41%), Bihar (10.04%), Chattisgarh (37.05%), Jammu and Kashmir (45.91%), Jharkhand (30.41%), Karnataka (46.28%), Madhya Pradesh (47.40%), Manipur (37.73%), Odhisha (46.33%), Rajasthan (26.33%) and West Bengal (40.33%).
There is also an acute shortage of Anganwadi workers, with over two lakh posts of functionaries related to government's child nutrition programme Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) which is implemented through AWCs, lying vacant.
Out of 55187, 14,00,000 and 12,83,150 sanctioned posts of child development project officers, supervisors, anganwadi workers and helpers, 19,452, 1,12,149, 1,18,609 are lying vacant respectively bringing the total to 2,53,758.