13 rice varieties to spice up menu for Tamil Nadu school children - The New Indian Express

13 rice varieties to spice up menu for Tamil Nadu school children

Published: 03rd November 2012 08:51 AM

Last Updated: 03rd November 2012 03:13 PM

The nutritious noon meal scheme is all set to undergo a sea change soon with Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa offering a tastier and healthier menu for the students - 13 types of variety rice and four types of egg masalas throughout the month.

The 13 variety rice items include sambar rice, curry rice, coriander rice, green curry leaves rice, lemon rice and dal rice. The new menu would be implemented across the State in a phased manner and children visiting the anganwadi centres would also be given a new menu as per their digestive capacity.

Welcoming the announcement of the CM, leaders of various political parties in the State Assembly said the measure would go a long way in ensuring drop-out free schools in rural areas. They hailed the motherly care that the CM extended towards the students and kids.

“I came to know that the food menu for the noon-meal scheme remained monotonous for a long time and advised the authorities to include dishes desirable to the children,” the Chief Minister said making a suo motu statement in the Assembly.

The new menu would be introduced in an area in each district on a pilot basis and, based on the feedback, it would be extended to other parts of the State, she said and added that the move would pave the way for enhancing the nutrition content of the meals offered under the noon meal scheme. Jayalalithaa said the scheme was launched by MGR in 1982 that aimed at providing nutritious food to children hailing from poor economic background to reduce malnutrition, besides increasing the enrolment ratio in schools and prevent drop outs.

After discussions with nutritional experts and popular chefs, channa pulav rice and boiled egg laced with pepper powder were given  to children at a school in Saidapet and in the Panchayat Union School at Andhanallur in Srirangam constituency on an experimental basis, the CM said. The students welcomed this change of taste and so, the State government decided to introduce the new menu across the State in a phased manner, she added.

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