‘Motte & Chikki Bhagya’! Eggs, Chikki & Banana during Midday Meals for School Children

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Seems like a ‘Motte & Chikki Bhagya’ by Karnataka Government! Eggs, Chikki & Banana during Midday Meals, now also for School Children of Std IX and X

Mangaluru: Apart from the five promises made by the Congress before winning the elections and then implementing them like the 200 units of free power to all households (Gruha Jyoti); Rs 2,000 monthly assistance to the woman head of every family (Gruha Lakshmi); 10 kilograms of rice free to every member of a below poverty line (BPL) household (Anna Bhagya); Rs 3,000 every month for unemployed graduate youth and Rs 1,500 for unemployed diploma holders aged 18-25 for two years (YuvaNidhi); Free travel for women in public transport buses (Shakti), and now CM Siddaramaiah has gifted yet another goodies to the school children by advising the education board to serve Motte (Eggs), Chikki and Banana during the midday meals.

Schools in Dakshina Kannada are preparing themselves to serve eggs, chikki, and bananas along with midday meals to grades IX and X. A year ago when the scheme was introduced in the district, it was a difficult situation where class nine and ten students used to sit together for lunch, but only grade 8 students and lower class students were served with egg, chikki, and banana. However, with the extension of the scheme to all, the school teachers said that it was a welcome move, and henceforth all children could be beneficiaries.

As per Usha M, executive officer, Akshara Dasoha- Dakshina Kannada, officially they have yet to receive an order from the government to serve eggs, chikki and bananas to class nine and ten students. The earlier government order to serve eggs, chikki and bananas during the midday meal to classes one to eight students is valid until next week. “We are hoping that order will be out this week,” she said.

Giving out the data on beneficiaries, Usha said that it is estimated that there are a total of 32,679 students studying grades nine and ten, who will soon become beneficiaries. About 1,13,887 students are studying in grades one to eight in the district, who are currently beneficiaries of the scheme. This academic year, eggs, chikki and bananas are being served once a week and will be served twice a week as per the recent state budget.

However, Usha said that based on current academic year data, the demand for eggs in Dakshina Kannada has reduced to 75% at the moment. Usha said that out of 1,13,887 children, about 85,390 students prefer eggs, which is around 75%. While the rest consume chikki and eggs. Chikki is a favourite among those who do not consume eggs. When the scheme was initially launched, close to 85% of children in the district consumed eggs. Whereas 10% and 5% of kids had opted for bananas and chikki, respectively.

“There are some children who, even though they eat eggs, do not prefer to eat at school all the time. As a result, the number of children consuming eggs fluctuates often,” said Usha, adding that egg prices in some places have touched Rs 7.50.

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