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Milk for school students in Rajasthan, CM inaugurates scheme

Jaipur chief minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday said that parents of 62 lakh children studying in government schools need not worry as the government has launched the Annapurna Milk Scheme for them

jaipur Updated: Jul 02, 2018 23:04 IST
HT Correspondents
HT Correspondents
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Rajasthan News
CM Vasundhara Raje offers milk to a schoolgirl at a government school in Dehmi Kalan in Jaipur on Monday.(HT Photo)

Months before Rajasthan goes to polls this year, chief minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday launched a scheme to provide milk thrice a week to 62 lakh children studying in state-run schools and madrasas.

“I am also a mother and I know the happiness in seeing the kids growing and being healthy,” the chief minister said while launching the Annapurna Milk Scheme at Adarsh Senior Secondary School in Dahmi Kalan near Jaipur.

Under the scheme, more than 62 lakh students at 66,506 government schools will be provided warm milk as part of the mid-day meal. Students till Class 5 will get 150 ml of warm milk thrice a week while those in class 6 to 8 will get 200 ml.

“This scheme is the foundation of our happy and healthy future. The nutritional level of children studying in government schools will improve and the enrolment will increase. Every child studying in government schools and madrasas will get fresh, pure and nutritious warm milk three days a week,” said Raje.

The chief minister said that milk supply in schools should be given to woman milk producing cooperatives. “Like mothers do not compromise on the quality of her children’s milk, the same way, women milk-producing committees will also maintain the quality.”

She highlighted innovations carried out in the state education sector, adding that vacancies of schoolteachers had been filled and model schools set up in all panchayat samitis.

Across the state, ministers in-charge of districts and local administrations inaugurated the scheme at government schools. While the scheme has been welcomed by all, a common complaint seemed to be that the department had not made provision of adding sugar to the milk.

The scheme is being implemented with a budget of ₹218 crore.

Nearly 5 lakh litres of milk will be served in schools, state school education minister Vasudev Devnani said.

For instance, a student at Government Montessori School in Kota district said, “It is difficult to drink milk as there is no sugar in it.” When asked about the lack of sugar, nodal officer of the scheme in Kota district Shashi Prakash Gautam said, “No budget has been sanctioned for sugar. A demand has been sent to the education directorate.”

While welcoming the scheme, teachers’ associations have said that they should be freed from the task of serving milk and meals to children. Nutanpuri Goswami, Barmer president of a teacher’s organisation said, “The teachers are overburdened, which is affecting education. If the task of providing milk is also given to us, it will just add to the burden.”

First Published: Jul 02, 2018 23:04 IST