New Delhi, July 22 (G’nY News Service): The government’s midday meal scheme, which provides five meals a week to malnourished children in rural areas, is now embroiled in a new controversy.
The Madhya Pradesh government has just dismissed a suggestion to include eggs a part of its mid day meal scheme. Instead the government has suggested milk and bananas as a replacement.
This comes as a shocker as almost half of the children in the state of Madhya Pradesh are either malnourished or underweight. This dismissal of eggs puts the government in a tight spot and reflects its lack of concern and empathy towards the children and their plight.
Activists have cried foul has they see a saffron color to this move. They allege a Hindutva agenda behind this move and have accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) governmentof trying to impose their vegetarian agenda on the lower castes as these people are not averse to eating meat.
They argue that eggs are nutritious, easy to store and help in increasing the attendance ofchildren in schools. This can be best illustrated with the example ofBihar where the inclusion of eggs in their mid day meal schemes has increased the attendance of students in schools.
The Madhya Pradesh government has defended its stance citing the example of Karnataka, a Congress ruled statewhich has followed a similar precedent.
Regardless of who is right or wrong, it’s imperative to consider the prerequisites of the malnourished children who unfortunately have to bear the brunt of this conflict of political choices.