GOVT. TO RESUME SUPPLY OF RICE, WHEAT TO PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS
Context: The State government has decided to continue midday meal scheme in 351 private schools, with students totalling 32,700, for one more year.
- The scheme was stopped following reduction in grants by the Centreto the State.
- As a result of this, supply of free foodgrains to thousands of schoolchildren and those living in hostels, old age and destitute homes, beggars’ rehabilitation centres, and night shelters run by 468 welfare institutions, including mutts and NGOs, came to a halt in November 2019.
- A majority of the beneficiaries (nearly 25,000) under the Dasoha scheme were students of schools and hostels run by Siddaganga Mutt, Suttur Mutt in Mysuru district, Adichunchanagiri Mutt, and Muruga Rajendra Mutt in Chitradurga.
- This has affected thousands of orphans, widows, and homeless and aged people in these welfare institutions.
- Over 1,000 patients and their attendants in the State-run Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, who are included in the beneficiary list, have also been hit.
- After the implementation of the National Food Security Act, 2013, the Centre had been providing an additional 5% of the 2.17 lakh tonnes of foodgrains allocated to the State (for public distribution system) every month.
- The State had been procuring rice at 3 a kg and wheat at 2 and providing the foodgrains for free to the beneficiaries of welfare organisations under the Dasoha scheme since 2016.
- Mid-Day Meal Programme is Government of India’s flagship programme for achievement of Universalization of Elementary Education (UEE) and is being implemented in partnership with State Government to cover the entire Karnataka.
- Mid-day meal programme was implemented in 7 educationally and economically backward north-eastern districts of the State during 2001-02.
- Later, the scheme was extended to other districts of the state in a phased manner. As per the directions of the Supreme Court of India, the scheme of providing hot cooked mid-day meal was implemented for all the children of classes 1st to 5th of Government schools.
- The programme was extended to children of classes 1 to 5 of Government aided primary schools.
- The scheme also extended to 6th to 7th std children.
- Now the Government of India is funding the scheme for children of classes 1 to 8.
- Government of Karnataka is providing hot cooked meals to the children of 9th & 10th standards of government and government aided schools and it is providing milk for 1 to 10th Standard students in weekly three days out of its own resources.
OBJECTIVES OF AKSHARA DASOHA
- To improve enrolment and attendance
- To improve retention rate
- To improve child health by increasing nutrition level
- To improve learning ability levels of children
- To bring about social equity
- To provide MDM to the children of draught affected area during summer vacation