COVID-19: No school meals for 51 lakh Gujarat students, says RTE Forum

COVID-19: No school meals for 51 lakh Gujarat students, says RTE Forum
Team Careers360 | Apr 11, 2020 - 2:38 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: The Right to Education Forum of Gujarat has written to the state commissioner for the Mid-Day Meal Scheme demanding dry rations and cooking costs for children.

Mid-day meals are served in all government-run elementary schools but due to the coronavirus outbreak, schools are on lockdown since March 25.

The letter, sent on April 11, 2020, alleges that although the Central Government has directed states to find ways to provide mid-day meals during the lockdown, Gujarat has made “no arrangements” for this. The lockdown was imposted to control the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

The letter points out that because of the lockdown, over 51 lakh children enrolled in 32,891 schools in the state are going without meals.

The demands

The Gujarat RTE Forum has demanded that the government immediately sanction the ration and cooking cost of mid-day meals for the whole of April 2020 “in advance”; include all children in the Ann Brahm Scheme for providing supplies; and “issue immediate orders” to officials to provide meals without break till June 2020.

“The main objective of the mid–day meal scheme is to eradicate malnutrition among children,” says the letter from the Gujarat RTE Forum’s convenor, Mujahid Nafees. “The purpose of this scheme will be defeated if we provide mid–day meals to these children after a long gap.”

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