Panaji, May 30 (IANS) Goa may be an educated state, has a poor sex ratio and malnutrition is also an issue, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Monday.
Speaking at the launch of a universal medical insurance scheme formally launched on Monday by the BJP-led coalition government, he also explained why he had backed financial dole schemes for women in the state when he was chief minister.
“Goans are educated, but in North Goa (district) the sex ratio is 910:1000. This means many girls are not getting born,” Parrikar said, while explaining why he came up with the Laadli Laxmi scheme which provides Rs 1 lakh to every girl child on birth. The beneficiary can access the sum from a designated bank on attaining the age of 21 years.
He said that around Rs. 450 crore had been disbursed to nearly 45,000 families under the scheme.
Parrikar also said that malnutrition was a serious issue in Goa and despite the impression that Goans were well off, families in Goa were not getting enough nourishment.
“We think a Goan is wealthy, there is a part of society around 40 to 50 per cent, which suffers from malnutrition. He (average Goan) cannot afford all the supporting nutrients. All this pressure then comes on the woman of the house,” he said, while justifying the initiation of the “Griha Adhar” scheme, which provide an allowance of Rs 1,000 every month to housewives to combat inflation.