No, PM Modi never said singing bhajans can solve malnutrition problem

Several social media users are claiming that Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during the 92nd episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’, suggested that singing “bhajans” (devotional songs) could solve the problem of malnutrition.

By Md Mahfooz Alam  Published on  5 Sep 2022 11:02 AM GMT
No, PM Modi never said singing bhajans can solve malnutrition problem

Hyderabad: Several social media users are claiming that Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during the 92nd episode of 'Mann ki Baat', suggested that singing "bhajans" (devotional songs) could solve the problem of malnutrition.

The claim comes in the backdrop of an article by The Wire Science that criticized Mr. Modi for saying "conducting bhajans can be part of the solutions to reducing malnutrition."

TRS working president and minister K.T. Rama Rao took a dig at the Prime Minister following this and tweeted, "Bhajan as a solution for Malnutrition! That too coming from PM! I seriously hope it was a teleprompter typo where Bhojan was typed in as Bhajan. India is ranked at 101/116 on the global hunger index & we need immediate focus & solution for malnutrition, not these comic capers."

The archive of the above post can be accessed here.

Ashok Swain, professor of peace and conflict research at Uppsala University, also tweeted, "Modi says singing Bhajan (Hindu devotional song) can solve malnutrition problem. Thankfully Nehru is not alive to witness this stupidity!"

The archive of the post can be accessed here.

Several Facebook users have also made similar claims. Click here and here to view them.


Fact Check:

The claim is misleading.

NewsMeter carefully listened to PM Modi's address published on PMO's YouTube channel on 28 August 2022 and read the English and Hindi transcript. At around the 12-minute timestamp, the PM speaks on malnutrition in children. The relevant excerpt of his address can be read below:

"Can you imagine, whether song and music and bhajans can also be used to remove malnutrition? It was successfully used in the "Mera Bachha Campaign" in the Datia district of Madhya Pradesh. Under this, bhajan-kirtans were organized in the district, in which teachers as nutrition gurus were called. A Matka program was also held, in which women bring a handful of grains to the Anganwadi centre and with this grain, a 'Balbhoj' is organized on Saturdays. Besides this increase in the attendance of children in Anganwadi centres, malnutrition has also shown a dip."

It is clear from this excerpt that Mr. Modi is not advocating that devotional songs can cure malnutrition. However, he spoke of cultural programmes consisting of songs and bhajans in Anganwadi centres and serving feasts that witnessed an increase in the attendance of children, which led to a decrease in malnutrition.

It is evident that Prime Minister Modi did not suggest in his 92nd episode of Mann ki Baat address that devotional songs could solve the problem of malnutrition.

Claim Review:PM Modi said singing bhajans can solve the malnutrition problem
Claimed By:Social Media Users
Claim Reviewed By:Newsmeter
Claim Source:Social Media
Claim Fact Check:False
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