Students at the government primary school at Betul district’s Chikli village in Madhya Pradesh have stopped attending classes after it stopped serving mid-day meals.
Chikli has been adopted by Bharatiya Janata Party national secretary and Betul Member of Parliament Jyoti Dhurve under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana.
According to sources, the school has 25 students on its rolls. Many parents from the economically weaker sections sent their kids to the school due to the attraction of the mid-day meal.
However, several irregularities in mid-day meals were reported from the school. Parents’ association secretary Betul Ramcharan Barasklar said an investigation was launched after they wrote a letter to block resource centre coordinator (BRCC) Deepak Mahale, who went for a surprise inspection and found the school’s kitchen locked. He also learnt that the school had served no meals since November 5.
“We found that the headmaster of the school, Badri Nanda, had asked the cook not to prepare meals as the food may get contaminated and she would be the person to face the consequences. On delving deeper, we found that he spread the rumour of contaminated food among the parents too,” Mahale told HT.
He said that Nanda has been suspended and parents are being urged to send their children back to school.
“We have informed the parents that hygienic food will be supplied in mid-day meals. We will arrange it from nearby government middle schools so that children can get their meals and do not miss out on classes,” Mahale said.
Collector Betul Shashank Mishr said that a new headmaster will now be appointed.
“The headmaster created a nuisance and locals stopped sending their children to school. When the matter came in my notice, we suspended him and we are now in the process of recruiting a new headmaster. A makeshift arrangement for mid-day meals has been made,” Mishr told HT.