Mission Indradhanush

Mission Indradhanush is a health mission launched by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

Undertaken by the Government of India

Mission Indradhanush was launched by Union Health Minister J. P. Nadda on 25 December, 2014. Mission Indradhanush aims to cover all those children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated, or are partially vaccinated against vaccine preventable diseases.

Why Was Mission Indradhanush Launched?

Mission Indradhanush was launched to cover all children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated, or are partially vaccinated against vaccine preventable diseases. It is an extension of India’s Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) which provides free vaccines against 12 life threatening diseases, to 26 million children annually.

What are the goals of Mission Indradhanush Vaccination Program?

The ultimate goal of Mission Indradhanush is to ensure full immunization with all available vaccines for children up to two years of age and pregnant women. The Government has identified 201 high focus districts across 28 states in the country that have the highest number of partially immunized and unimmunized children.

Earlier, the increase in full immunization coverage was 1% per year which has increased to 6.7% per year through the first two phases of Mission Indradhanush. Four phases of Mission Indradhanush have been conducted till August 2017 and more than 2.53 crore children and 68 lakh pregnant women have been vaccinated.

Diseases covered under Mission Indradhanush

Mission Indradhanush provides life-saving vaccines to all children across the country, free of cost, to protect them against the following diseases:

  • Tuberculosis
  • Diphtheria
  • Pertussis
  • Tetanus
  • Polio
  • Hepatitis B
  • Pneumonia and Meningitis due to Haemophilus Influenzae type b (Hib).
  • Measles
  • Rubella
  • Japanese Encephalitis
  • Rotavirus diarrhea
  • Rubella, JE and Rotavirus vaccine in select states and districts.

Key Targeted Areas of Indradhanush Immunization Program

The entire program has been designed to work in phases. The first phase covers 201 high priority districts and the second phase covers 297 districts in the year 2015. The third phase covers 216 districts in the year 2016. The districts comprise of high risk settlements identified by the polio eradication programme. These settlements usually have low coverage due to geographic, demographic, ethnic and other operational challenges. 8The high risk areas include: 8

  • Urban slums with migration
  • Nomads
  • Brick kilns
  • Construction sites
  • Other migrants (fisherman villages, riverine areas with shifting populations etc.) and
  • Underserved and hard to reach populations (forested and tribal populations etc.).
  • Areas with low routine immunization (RI) coverage (pockets with Measles/vaccine preventable disease (VPD) outbreaks).
  • Areas with vacant sub-centers: No ANM posted for more than three months.
  • Areas with missed Routine Immunization (RI) sessions: ANMs on long leave and similar reasons.
  • Small villages, hamlets, dhanis or purbas clubbed with another village for RI sessions and not having independent RI sessions.

How Does Mission Indradhanush Work?

Mission Indradhanush works on the following four elements:

  • Planning and Implementation - Ensure the availability of sufficient vaccinators and all vaccines during routine immunization sessions. Provide vaccines to unreached children in more than 400,000 high risk settlements such as urban slums, construction sites, brick kilns, nomadic sites and hard-to-reach areas.

  • Social Mobilization - Engage in social mobilization and effective communication in order to create awareness, demand for immunization services enhance participation of the community in the routine immunization programme through mass media, mid media, interpersonal communication (IPC), school and youth networks and corporations.

  • Training of health officials and frontline workers - Provide adequate training to health officials and workers in routine immunization activities for quality immunization services.

  • Establish Accountability - Ensure that the district administrative and health machinery are accountable in their practice of implementing district task forces for immunization in all districts of India. Also, ensuring the use of concurrent session monitoring data to plug the gaps in implementation on a real time basis.

Phases & Intensified of Mission Indradhanush

Phases of Mission Indradhanush

The districts covered are:

Phase I - 201 districts

Phase II - 352 districts

Phase III - 216 districts

Phase IV- North Eastern State: Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura from 7th February 2017 and will be rolled out in the rest of the country in April 2017.

Intensified Mission Indradhanush

The IMI has been launched by the government to immunize each and every child under two years of age and all those pregnant women who have been left uncovered under the routine immunisation programme. It is dedicated to ensure full immunization to more than 90% by December 2018.

Under the IMI, the four immunization rounds will be conducted for 7 days in 173 districts - 121 districts and 17 cities in 16 states and 52 districts in 8 north eastern states - every month between October 2017 and January 2018. Additional areas will be covered as mentioned in the national surveys, Health Management Information System data and World Health Organization concurrent monitoring data, urban settlements and cities identified under National Urban Health Mission (NUHM).

In addition to the government of India, the IMI will be supported by the following groups:

  • Ministry of Women and Child Development
  • Panchayati Raj
  • Ministry of Urban Development
  • Ministry of Youth Affairs
  • ASHA
  • ANMs
  • Anganwadi workers
  • Zila preraks under National Urban Livelihood Mission (NULM)
  • Self-help groups

Further, the IMI is reviewed by the Cabinet Secretary at the National level and is monitored at the highest level under a special initiative ‘Proactive Governance and Timely Implementation (PRAGATI).


Mission Indradhanush has been quite successful in its initiative of mass immunization. As per Union Health Ministry’s internal data, immunization stands at 83%. The 83 per cent coverage figure is till November 2018. The new target is to achieve 90% by December 2019.