National Convention of BPNI in New Delhi on 9th and 10th Dec 2005
National Convention of BPNI was held at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi on 9th and 10th Dec 2005. This convention had participants representing all parts of India. There were BPNI members, members from NGO’s, Government departments, and other institutions. There were health professionals and participants from other walks of life also. 
Renowned paediatrician Dr. Shanti Ghosh inaugurated the Opening Session on the first day and Dr. Prema Ramachandran, Director; Nutrition Foundation of India gave inaugural address. It was followed by Sharing of district level action on IYCF with presentations from BPNI district coordinators from different parts of India.
The second session was on HIV and Infant Feeding with Prof. A.P. Dubey from MAMC, Delhi as Chairperson and speakers were Dr. Indra Prakash, Jt. Director (Training), NACO, Ms. Vidya Ganesh, UNICEF, Prof. M.M.A. Faridi, UCMS, Delhi and Dr. Rajesh Gopal, SACS, Gujarat. Then there were presentations from different stakeholders about infant feeding in the context of HIV. It was followed by group work on strengthening of infant feeding: policy and programme facilitated by Dr. M.M.A. Faridi (Group a) and Dr. J.P. Dadhich (Group b).
The second day of the convention was devoted to Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergency Situations. Dr. K.K. Agarwal, Vice Chancellor, Indraprastha University, Delhi chaired this session and inaugural address was given by Mr. Vinod Menon, Member, National Disaster Management Authority. Dr. Shashi Prabha Gupta, Technical Advisor, MWCD, GOI chaired the next session on Sharing technical information and field data. Dr. Sangeeta Saxena, ACCH, MOHFW gave introduction to the problem. Then Dr. Anchita Patil, WHO (India) presented the WHO Guidelines on Infant Feeding in Emergencies. This was followed by reports from the states of Mumbai, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry and Jammu and Kashmir where surveys were done on Status of Infant feeding in Emergencies recently faced by these states. 
Next was a panel discussion on Mainstreaming with current disaster preparedness moderated by Mr. N.M. Prusty, from SPHERE and with participation by Ms. Deepika Nayar, CARE India, Dr. Sangeeta Yadav, IAP, Brig. (Dr.) B.K. Khanna, NDMA, and Dr. J. Ganthimathi, Indian Red Cross Society.
Dr. Shanti Ghosh chaired the closing ceremony and final recommendations were presented by Dr. J.P. Dadhich (for HIV and Infant Feeding) and Dr. Arun Gupta (for Infant Feeding in Emergency Situations) after getting inputs from the delegates. And finally convention came to an end after distribution of World Breastfeeding Week Awards to state and district branches, NGOs and government institutions. 
Proceedings of this convention have been compiled in the form of two reports, one on Infant Feeding and HIV and second on Infant Feeding in Emergency Situations and have been shared with all stakeholders and others.

Inputs into National Policy. Dr. Arun Gupta held discussions with Dr. Vinod Paul from Department of Paediatrics, AIIMS, on 26 Nov 2005 concerning IYCF related issues. The objective of the meeting was to provide inputs for National Policy.
Participation in Newborn week 2005
Symposium on ‘Neonatal Transport’. Dr. Arun Gupta attended ‘Release of Commemorative Postal Stamp on Newborn Health in India’ and ‘Symposium on Neonatal Transport’ on the occasion of Newborn Week 2005 during the Silver Jubilee year of NNF on 24 November 2005.
Discussions with Jan Swasthya Abhiyan
Dr. Arun Gupta had detailed discussions with Dr. Vandana Prasad of Jan Swasthya Abhiyan on 22 November 2005 concerning child health and development related issues and how to mainstream breastfeeding and child survival issue.
Participation in National Consultative Meeting on Child Survival and Development of Urban Poor Population at Maulana Asad Medical College (MAMC), New Delhi
A National Consultative Meeting on Child Survival and Development of Urban Poor Population was held from 19-20 November 2005 at MAMC, Delhi. The objectives were: In-depth discussion on Child Survival and Development Concerns of Urban Poor and Migratory Populations in light of GOI’s RCH II Programme/NRHM; to identify specific areas in which IAP and its chapters can work in partnership with the government and other agencies concerned at national, state and city levels to improve child health among the urban poor; to recommend feasible strategies for improving child health among this hitherto neglected group and to develop outlines for Child Survival and Development plans in 1 large and 1 medium sized city of India. Participants included IAP members, members from academic institutions, GOI, state governments, WHO, UNICEF, USAID, NGOs, public health, media, etc. Dr. J.C. Sobti represented BPNI at the meeting.
Participation at Concluding Mid-Term Review of the Government of India-UNICEF, Country Programme 2003-2007 at Delhi
The Concluding Session of the Mid-Term Review of the Government of India-UNICEF, Country Programme 2003-2007 was held at Hotel Le Meridien, Delhi, on 10 November 2005, organised jointly by the MWCD, GOI and UNICEF India. The purpose of the meeting was to review the present programme, to identify the gaps and difficult areas to recommend amendments for future plan for the remaining period of the Master Plan of Operations (MPO). UNICEF is carrying out implementation of programmes as per the agreement signed for the period 2003-07. Dr. Arun Gupta from BPNI represented in the meeting.
National Workshop on Pre-service Education organised by BPNI from 5-6 November 2005 at Gurgaon, Haryana
A 2-day Workshop on Sensitisation of Nodal Senior Faculty Members from the departments of Pediatrics and Community Medicine was organised by BPNI from 5-6 November 2005 at the Hotel Royal Retreat, Gurgaon. There were 26 participants from all over the country, covering all five zones. Its aim was Commitment to promotion of child health and development and collective efforts to improve infant and young child feeding in the country. The participants, including eminent medical teachers, agreed to be among the regional medical college leaders for incorporating IYCF into the undergraduate curriculum of medical students. The workshop primarily focused on the following broad areas -
(a) The learning objectives and identify gaps in the current teaching of ‘Essentials of IYCF’ to medical students; 
(b) Decide ‘what’ (contents), ‘how’ (teaching methods) and ‘when’ (which semesters) to introduce the desired changes in the revised curriculum; 
(c) Preparation of Action Plan by the individual institution that would include training of faculty members in lactation management and complementary feeding and curriculum planning. The action plan included proposed activities to sensitise and train key personnel from the neighboring medical colleges assigned to each regional leader.

Participation in South Asia Breastfeeding Partners’ Forum 2 in Nepal: Ensure Exclusive Breastfeeding: Save Newborn Lives. South Asia Breastfeeding Partners’ Forum 2 was held at Kathmandu, from 26-28 October 2005
It was convened by IBFAN/UNICEF Rosa, and hosted by NEFPROF, Nepal. BPNI sent its representatives Dr. C.R. Banapurmath, Dr. Sanjay Prabhu, Dr. J.C. Sobti and Dr. J.P. Dadhich. The meeting resulted in the adoption of action recommendations to contribute towards achieving the UN’s Millennium Development Goals. It called upon the governments of South Asian countries, UNICEF, WHO, UNAIDS, and other international organisations, health professionals, and NGOs, including media to work in partnership with each other on this issue. The following 10 recommendations were adopted:

  1. Universalise neonatal care, by adopting in principle the “Neonatal integrated package” which includes 'breastfeeding education', as recommended in the MDG Report to the Secretary General, 2005”.
  2. Ensure that there is a budget line to enhance early and exclusive breastfeeding.
  3. Make all efforts to enhance the practice of early and exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months and continued breastfeeding along with adequate and appropriate complementary feeding for two years or beyond.
  4. Revitalise Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) and expand it to family /community level calling it BFHI-CI.
  5. Review the communication strategies of breastfeeding movement and link with other groups proactively and productively.
  6. Strategically link with media professionals, providing them with up to date, accurate and timely information, and organise structured education programmes for media.
  7. Issue/revise guidelines on HIV and infant feeding on a regular basis basis, as an integral part of training.
  8. Ensure the International Code for Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent relevant WHA resolutions are legislated and implemented effectively, specially the 'sponsorship' clause from WHA 2005.
  9. Develop clear operational guidelines for handling infant feeding during emergencies.
  10. Build national/institutional capacities for training of workers in breastfeeding, complementary feeding and HIV infant feeding counselling; Code implementation and monitoring; management and other related issues.
Participation in Preparatory meeting for 27th session of Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU)
Dr. J.C. Sobti attended a meeting of Shadow Committee on Nutrition and Biotechnology on 24th October 2005, for discussions on agenda items of 27th session of CCNFSDU scheduled for 21-25 Nov 2005 at Bonn, Germany. Food and Nutrition Board, Dept of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Human Resource Development, GOI, organised the meeting.
Participation in review of NIPCCD training in relevance to IYCF
Dr. Arun Gupta and Dr. Sobti from BPNI met with NIPCCD Director, Dr. Arun Kumar Gopal, on 18 October 2005 to welcome Dr. Gopal, and discuss BPNI’s role and its activities in collaboration with NIPCCD. Dr. Gopal assured continued support to strengthen breastfeeding and IYCF issues by NIPCCD on a regular basis. He also assured enhanced participation as well as closer collaboration for better results and output.
Meanwhile, NIPCCD has made IYCF a part of its training programme of middle level functionaries
Participation in review of NIPCCD training in relevance to IYCF
Dr. Arun Gupta and Dr. Sobti from BPNI met with NIPCCD Director, Dr. Arun Kumar Gopal, on 18 October 2005 to welcome Dr. Gopal, and discuss BPNI’s role and its activities in collaboration with NIPCCD. Dr. Gopal assured continued support to strengthen breastfeeding and IYCF issues by NIPCCD on a regular basis. He also assured enhanced participation as well as closer collaboration for better results and output.
Meanwhile, NIPCCD has made IYCF a part of its training programme of middle level functionaries
Rapid Assessment of the Status of Global Strategy for IYCF in South Asia Countries
Rapid Assessment of the Status of Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) practices at the National Level---Finding Gaps has been carried out in eight South Asia Countries viz. Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. All South Asian countries reports were presented along with country specific plan of action, at the South Asia Breastfeeding Partners’ Forum–2 at Kathmandu in October 2005.
In India this assessment was carried out by BPNI, NNF and AIIMS. The Indian report was published as India Report and circulated among all the stakeholders. IBFAN Asia Pacific as a part of Strategic Plan 2003-2008 has proposed a rapid assessment of the Status of GSIYCF to measure the situation at the national level and to document existing gaps. It is hoped that the same process will be followed in the year 2007/2008 so as to reassess the progress and contribute to trends.
Participated in Workshop on Neonatal and Infant Morbidity and Mortality at PGI, Chandigarh
Dr. J.P. Dadhich, Coordinator, BPNI, participated at the Workshop on Neonatal and Infant Morbidity and Mortality: Contributors, Biology and Intervention Strategies held at PGI, Chandigarh from 28-29 September 2005. It was organised under the aegis of the Indo-US collaboration on Maternal and Child Health and Human Development Research for identifying priority research issues, potential research investigators and help in the development of appropriate research proposals in this area. BPNI provided important inputs about optimal IYCF practices. One of the ideas was to utilise this Indo-US platform to invite eminent research scientists from both United States and India together during the workshop.
Improving the counselling skills of frontline workers in Tamil Nadu. During September 2005
BPNI has submitted a 3-Year Project Proposal - 2006-2008 on Strengthening Infant and Young Child Feeding Counselling Skills of women frontline workers in Tamil Nadu, India, for funding to UNICEF NATCOM, Luxembourg through UNICEF India, Delhi.
Disseminating National Plan of Action for Children 2005 to various professional organisations
A meeting to discuss National Plan of Action was organised at the India International Centre on 30 August 2005, which was represented by Dr. JC Sobti from BPNI. The role of BPNI was to help contact Professional Organisations and National Partners for dissemination of National Plan of Action.
BPNI Bulletin. BPNI is publishing a bulletin giving latest information about infant and young child feeding, violations of the IMS Act, activities in the headquarter and different state and district branches of BPNI. Over these three years 6 bulletins wee published from No. 23 to 28 covering following topics:

Bulletin No 23: October 2003: wide coverage was given to the amendment of the IMS Act and WHAT is PROHIBITED and WHAT is NOT in the Amended IMS Act.
Bulletin No 24: April 2004: it covered the Asia Pacific Conference on Breastfeeding and National Convention of BPNI, Infant Feeding and HIV-A Regional Colloquium for the Asia Pacific and World Breastfeeding Week 2003.
Bulletin No 25: July 2004: coverage was given to forthcoming World Breastfeeding Week 2004 and articles on breastmilk importance.
Bulletin No 26: December 2004: it covered World Breastfeeding Week 2004 and release of District Specific Report on Status of Infant and Young Child Feeding in 2003.
Bulletin No 27: June 2005: it describes how the IMS Act was stopped from repealing by Government of India, and carried an article on Public Health Risk of Enterobacter sakasakii and other micro organisms in Powdered Infant Formula.
Bulletin No 28: February 2006: It highlighted World Breastfeeding Week 2005 activities all over India, World Breastfeeding Week Awards
Participation in Evaluation of WHO India Activities
A meeting was organised by the WHO India titled Evaluation of the WHO India Activities on 2 August 2005. Objective of the discussions with BPNI was to discuss its activities and role. Dr. JC Sobti of BPNI informed the house about the activities of BPNI and recommended that NGOs should be involved with WHO to collaborate in the activities carried out from time to time.
Meeting between BPNI and various government departments to discuss the agenda of next session of Codex Committee
A Meeting of Shadow Committee on Nutrition and Biotechnology was conducted by the Ministry of HRD, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Food and Nutrition Board in New Delhi on 27 July 2005 for the discussions on agenda items of 27th session of Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) scheduled for 21-25 November 2005 at Bonn, Germany. Dr. Arun Gupta from BPNI represented it.
Participation in meeting to fight for the rights’ of the mother
A meeting was organised by the Jan Swasthya Abhiyan on 20 July 2005 with a few partners to discuss the threat to withdraw the National Maternity Benefit Scheme and replace it with Janani Suraksha Yojna. The issue of Maternity Entitlements brings together women’s rights in the situation of maternity, her rights as a worker as well as her need for support for care of the new born. Maternity and the first few months of life of the newborn is thus a situation during which the rights of the child cannot be separated from the rights of the mother. Dr. Jagdish C. Sobti from BPNI participated in this meeting.
Participation in Regional Consultation on Nutrition in Orissa. Dr. Arun Gupta, national coordinator
Dr. Parbati Sen Gupta, Dr. Sunita Katyayan and Dr. Satpathy, BPNI coordinators from West Bengal, Jharkhand and Orissa, participated at the Regional Consultation on Nutrition, Bhubaneshwar, Orissa, 18-19 July 2005. It included important session on malnutrition and infant and young child nutrition, caring practices micronutrients, and food fortification. Dr. Arun Gupta made a presentation on the impact of breastfeeding on child health, development and survival and addressed significant issue to focus on skills of workers and need of support to women. He emphasized that more resources need to be allocated. During deliberations several questions were asked and clarifications sought.
Participation in National Consultation on ICDS organised by government departments
The Ministry of HRD and the Ministry of Women and Child Development organised a National Consultation on ICDS: Universalisation with Quality, with UNICEF’s cooperation from 6-7 July 2005 at the Parliament House Annexe, New Delhi. It was in an endeavour to collectively renew Govt of India commitment to their shared vision of child friendly villages with healthy, well-nourished children, who are active learners. Dr. Arun Gupta represented from BPNI.
‘National Partners Planning Meeting’ held in June 2005. The second National Partners’ Planning Meeting was held in Mussoorie from 23 to 24 June 2005
It was organised by BPNI in consultation with Ministry of Women & Child Development (MWCD), Ministry of Human Resource Development and in collaboration with UNICEF, India. This meeting was a follow up of a similar meeting titled Promoting Breastfeeding: The Way Forward which was organised in Mussoorie in November 2002. The conduct of November 2002 meeting resulted in the development of a ‘Draft Action Plan for India’ submitted to the Secretary-WCD. It facilitated several important and useful actions for the country though much remains to be done.
In the month of April 2005, the National Breastfeeding Committee meeting was chaired by the Joint Secretary WCD, Sh. Chaman Kumar; the Chairman of the Committee. It was decided that a National Action Plan on Breastfeeding be evolved by NIPCCD, in consultation with BPNI. In this regard, BPNI had initial discussions with NIPCCD and planned to organise a National Partners’ Planning Meeting at Mussoorie from 23-24 June 2005.
The objectives of the meeting included holding extensive discussions on infant and young child feeding issues for promoting optimal breastfeeding practices, complementary feeding practices among all populations and counselling on infant feeding options to HIV positive women. The key partners at the meeting included ACASH, IAP, IMA, NNF, NIN, NIPCCD, and UNICEF, Min of Health and Family Welfare, FOGSI, NIHFW, TNAI, JSA.
Recommendations to Strengthen IYCF:
BPNI meets Govt. of Maharashtra and UNICEF to find ways to strengthen the Organisation
Dr. Arun Gupta and Dr. Tarsem Jindal from BPNI headquarters visited Maharashtra from 23-24 July 2005 for a meeting with BPNI Maharashtra to hold discussions on various key issues. They met officials from the Government of Maharashtra, Mr. Chandrasen Turkar (Dept. of Women and Child Development) and Dr. B. Kishore (UNICEF Mumbai State Office), along with members from BPNI Maharashtra including - Dr. N.B. Kumta, Dr. Vasant Khatav, Dr. Charu Suraiya, Dr. Satish Tiwari, Dr. Alka Kuthe, Dr. Prashant Gangal, Ms. Priya Deo, Mr. Sanjay Prabhu, J. Vagha and from ACASH – Dr. R.K. Anand and Dr. Pawan Surekha. The meeting was held at Rambhau Mhagali Prabhodini, Bhayender on 23 July 2005. The meeting resulted in useful discussions and highlighted several issues and identified targets in order to strengthen BPNI Maharashtra in close collaboration with UNICEF State Office and the concerned authorities of the Government of Maharashtra. It was decided to get involved into more activities for organisation’s growth and achieve its aims and targets