At least 2,21,694 (or 9.76%) children between the ages of six and 17 in Delhi were out of the schooling system, a survey conducted by the state government has found out, The Indian Express reported on Friday. At least 90,110 of these children never attended a school, while the remaining dropped out.
The survey showed that most of the children (29.2%) did not attend school due to financial constraint. As many as 13.50% of the respondents said that they were “engaged in domestic duties”, while 9.37% were said to be “engaged in economic activities”, according to The Indian Express.
The survey which covered 1.02 crore people and looked into a number of demographic and other indicators like religion, caste, income, education, chronic illnesses, status of vaccination, employment and preferred modes of transport, was conducted by the Delhi government between November 2018 and November 2019, and was finalised in November 2020, The Indian Express reported. It was taken up following the deaths of three minor girls of suspected starvation in East Delhi’s Mandawali area in July 2018.
The family of the three girls had no ration card, or any other food support. The girls were not even enrolled in the nearest anganwadi.
The survey conducted by the Delhi government showed that they were not the only one to fall through the cracks, as just 55.40% of children in the age group of 0-6 years, attended anganwadi centres, according to The Indian Express. Moreover, less than half (47.15%) of the pregnant women aged 18 years and above in the Capital attended the centres run under the Integrated Child Development Services programme of the government.
As far as healthcare is concerned, 72.87% of the city’s population availed treatment at government hospitals and dispensaries, while the remaining went to private facilities. More alarmingly, nearly one-fourth (2.13 lakh out of 9.5 lakh) of the children in the age group 0-5 years had not received nor were receiving vaccination.
The survey also found out that 42.59% households in the city spent less than Rs 10,000 per month, while 47.31% households spent between Rs 10,000 and Rs 25,000. The per capita income of Delhi was Rs 3.89 lakh in 2019-20, about three times the national average, The Indian Express reported.