Uttar Pradesh: No vaccination, no food ration
Bahraich District of Uttar Pradesh has one of the lowest child immunization rates in India. According to National Family Health, only one of every 10 children in the district is fully immunized. In order to improve immunization rates in the district, district officials are threatening poor families to cut off their subsidized food ration if they failed to immunize their children.
An Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) Rajwanti Devi Jaiswal repeated slogan no immunization, no ration. Rakesh Kumar district supply officer of Bahraich district said that they are totally aware, that they can not stop any family’s ration but threatening people for immunization of the children seem to be working. In order to make this work, ASHA workers are reporting the name of the families that are refusing immunization to the food supply department. Officials will then instruct ration food shop owners to tell those families to immunize their children in order to get their ration.
District magistrates office asked Kumar to implement these measures. The sole intention is to increase immunization but to make sure that this should only be a threat as stopping subsidized ration of any family under any circumstances is unlawful. Officials stated that this desperate measure is showing a considerable increase in the number of parents immunizing their children since October.