Palghar: Social organisations in Palghar district have come forward to lend a helping hand to resolve the issue of malnourishment among tribal children by opening an SOS centre and organising medical camp for them.

An SOS centre is immediately being set up at Tilsa village in Wada taluka by local NGO Vithu Mauli Charitable Trust. The malnourished children will be lodged in the centre where parents will also be accommodated till the kids recover, said Vivek Pandit, chairman of Sharamajivi Sanghatana which is working for the uplift of tribals.

A medical camp will also be held for the malnourished children at Jawhar cottage hospital on November 15, he said. "We cannot wait for the government to act as by then the situation will become worse. Hence, we have on our own decided to undertake these two programmes," he said.

According to an official report, there are over 5,500 malnourished children, falling under SAM (severe acute malnutrition) and MAM (moderate acute malnutrition), in Palghar district.

A delegation led by Pandit had recently submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis listing the various issues faced by the tribal children, following the closure of Village Child Development Centre (VCDC) by the Central government.

The Chief Minister, after hearing the view points of the delegation, directed the chief secretary to prepare a comprehensive and workable action plan to resolve the issue. He directed that a programme on the lines of VCDC be started in the state out of funds available from the tribal development department.

Hundreds of tribals had last week gheraoed state Tribal Development Minister Vishnu Sawra at his residence to protest the alleged apathy of the government towards malnutrition among children in the district.