Rs. 253 crore to be spent on mid day meal Scheme
Chandigarh, 24 August 2012 4: With a view to ease problems in procurement of LPG cylinders for mid-day-meal preparations in the schools, the State government has directed Deputy Commissioners & Food Supply officers to ensure that cooking gas refills should be supplied to all the schools as and when required.
Disclosing this here today, Education Minister Punjab Mr. Sikandar Singh Maluka said that the department had been successfully providing hot cooked meal to about 20 lac students from class 1st to class 8th in all the state primary and upper primary schools including aided schools, education guarantee scheme (EGS) and alternative innovative education (AIE) centers for all working days in a year.
He informed that to provide better facilities for safe and hygienic cooking, kitchen devices and proper sheds including storage bins, gas bhatties, fire extinguishers and LPG gas connections have been provided in all the schools. Under the mid day meal programme cooks have also been appointed by the local school committees to prepare the hot cooked food. He also directed the concerned authorities to hire one person for 25 students while 2 persons would be hired in case the number of students would be between 25 to100.
The Minister further said that heads of schools providing food to students under the mid-day-meal scheme and the District Education Officers (DEOs) would also ensure smooth supply of LPG on priority basis. He has been informed that all LPG distributors would provide requisite connections and refills at the school level on priority. "The head teacher would request for registration to refill the cylinder on telephone by mentioning consumer number and the dealer would inform him about the date of supply", he said.
The Minister said that during the current fiscal 2012-13, the department would spent Rs. 253.38 crore for 15,338 primary schools and 6697 for upper primary schools as cooking costs to provide mid-day-meal to the students. He said that to improve enrolment and attendance of students, the mid-day-meal programme was supportive in recovery of retention rate and child health by increasing nutrition level. Besides it has also been improving learning levels of children.