Despite facing nationwide criticism over death of 23 children after having the midday meal last year, Bihar now secured the fifth position among best performing states.
Claiming Bihar made strides in providing midday meal, state Education minister P K Shahi told PTI as per assessment by Central agencies, "We are in the fifth position among best performing states in midday meal scheme for school children."
Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala and Tripura were ahead of Bihar. The rank is given on assessing indices like coverage, hot meal and nutritional value of food served, the minister said talking on the sidelines of "Janata ke Darbar mein Mukhya Mantri" programme at CM'S residence yesterday.
Shahi, accompanied by Principal Secretary Education Amarjeet Sinha, said for Bihar - which used to figure at the bottom of the ranking - moving to the fifth position was a big achievement which came due to emphasis given by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
The death of 23 children after eating midday meal in a primary school in Gandaman village of Saran district in June last year in Bihar had triggered nationwide outrage.
The minister said in a new initiative, the state has launched Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) developed by an IT company with the scheme's website www.dopahar.org for daily details of implementation of midday meal provided by principal of schools across the state.
"Anybody can have a look at details through a click of mouse," Shahi said.
"The website has attracted many a states to emulate the experiment," he said proudly.