(a) whether a number of cases have been/are being reported about the school children falling sick due to intake of mid day meal;

(b) if so, the number of such cases reported during each of the last three years and the current year and the action taken against the guilty persons, State-wise;

(c) the guidelines fixed for serving mid day meal to school children;

(d) the reasons for not monitoring the following of these guidelines by suppliers or school administrations;

(e) whether the Government has recently issued fresh guidelines in regard to mid day meal;

(f) if so, the details thereof and the steps taken or being taken by the Government to ensure that school children are served with clean and safe meal;

(g) whether there is any proposal to increase the remuneration for cooking and other services, if so, the details thereof;

(h) whether instances of non-use of iodized salt in some schools in mid day meals have been brought to the notice of the Government; and

(i) if so, the details thereof and the steps being taken in this regard?

Answer given by the minister



(a) & (b): The details of cases of school children falling sick due to intake of mid day meal are given in the Annexure. In 15 out of 25 complaints, where the negligence was proved, the States/UTs have taken necessary action which include issuing necessary instructions, warning to the concerned NGO and officers, initiation of departmental proceedings against erring officials, transfer of the Principal, and registration of a of criminal case against the contractor.

(c): The Mid Day Meal Guidelines stipulate that children at primary stage be provided with a meal to ensure 450 calories of energy and 12 grams of protein and 700 calories of energy and 20 grams of protein at upper primary stage; hygienic conditions be maintained, Kitchen-cum-store should have a raised platform for cooking, adequate light, proper ventilation, system for drainage and waste disposal and must always be kept clean; ingredients used for cooking, food grains, pulses, vegetables, cooking oil and condiments should be free from adulteration and pest infestation and should be stored in proper containers; utensils for cooking and serving should be properly cleaned and dried every day after use; 2-3 adults members, one of them being a teacher, must taste the food before it is served to the children; and active community participation in supervision and monitoring of the programme.

(d): There is a detailed monitoring and review mechanism at all levels to ensure effective implementation of the scheme. Grievance Redressal Mechanisms have been established in the States for registration and redressal of complaints. In addition, 40 independent monitoring institutes evaluate the scheme at regular intervals besides regular Review Missions on MDM scheme.

(e) & (f): The Central Government has decided to serve the children studying in National Child Labour Project schools in accordance with as upper primary norms from 1st November of the year 2011-12, keeping in view their higher age group. In addition the need for maintaining hygiene and safety in the food served under mid day meal, has been reaffirmed from time to time.

(g) & (h): No, Sir.

(i): Does not arise.