MDM scheme in disarray
By Express News Service | Published: 24th November 2012 12:57 PM |
Allegations of large-scale bungling and non-availability of mid-day meal for school-going children in Erasama-Balikuda Assembly areas came up at a meeting on Wednesday. The development committee meeting, chaired by local MLA Prasant Muduli was held at Erasama block office.
More than 200 villages under Balikuda and Erasama blocks have no road connectivity and thus MDM rice hardly reach the schools in remote villages of this coastal region. As a result, children return home with an empty stomach every day, the villagers said.
Several elected representatives alleged that non-availability of rice is regular and thus all poor kids return without food.
Also, it has often been found that each rice bag carries 10-15 kg less than the usual prescribed amount. Rice served to students in schools is not cooked well. “The mid-day meal programme has been badly hit in many schools resulting in poor attendance’’, a villager told the meeting.
MLA Muduli expressed dissatisfaction and asked the officials to take prompt action and follow a standard menu. Poor students will stop coming to school if they do not get food, he said.
He also directed district inspector of schools, Jagatsinghpur and Tirtol to probe and submit report on the irregularities in MDM scheme.
Villagers also put up their grievances about old age and widow pension scheme, irregularities in Gaon Kalyan Samiti fund spending, distribution of fake paddy seeds and tardy progress of electricity connection under Rajiv Gandhi Bidyut scheme.
Those who attended the meeting included DRDA project director Nandakishore Sethy, district education officer Prasant Swain, BDO Erasama Kanhu Charan Dhir and BDO Balikuda Laganjit Rout.