Stunting contributes highly to the global burden ofmalnutrition among children.
Reportedly 115 million (22.9%) of under-5 childrenpopulation in the world are stunted. Dwelling further into geographicaldistribution, Asian & African continents accommodates the greatest share ofit (United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, World Health Organization, WHO,World Bank Group, WBG 2017). According to NFHS survey 2015-16, 38.4% under-fivechildren are stunted in India. Despite of the modest decline in level ofstunting in state of Maharashtra the burden still stands up to 34.4%, parameterbeing 25.
5% in Mumbai District.Stunting is considered to be the result of suboptimalnutrient intake over a critical window of 0 to 23 months of life.70% ofstunting reportedly occurs during this period (Herry JLet al.
2014).It leads tomanifestation of lasting damages during the life span of children. Aninadvertent management of it in early childhood may lead to development ofmultiple adverse health events. These events range from high susceptibility toinfections in short run to poor cognitive performance, memory and locomotiveskills in long run.
In developing countries, stuntingis seen associated with high human as well as economic cost .Accumulativeeffects of its consequences cost Asian and African countries up to 11 % oftheir gross national product, subsequently hindering socioeconomic developmentof these nations (Horton S.et al, 2013). The frame work designed by UNICEF todetermine the determinants of malnutrition in children has categorized theminto of three causes: the basic causes, the underlying causes, and the immediatecauses namely (Black et al., 2013; UNICEF, 1998).Politicalinstability, poverty & lack of capital etc. are considered as basic causes (Beiersmannet al.
, 2013). Household factors & maternal characteristics are supportedas underlying causes in various literatures (Rannan?Eliya et al.,2013). Furthermore Biological risk factors such as age, etc. are considered asimmediate causes of malnutrition (Chirande et al.
, 2015). The determinants of stunting arefound to be interrelated complex & multidimensional ranging fromfundamental factors such as socioeconomic status to specific factors includingillness due to infectious disease (Paudel R et al, 2013).Understanding of thesedeterminants are therefore very essential for designing and tailoring specificinterventions to combat stunting in any geographic location. Therefore thepresent study aims to provide evidence and direction for efforts to reducechild stunting in the vulnerable segments.