Sonebhadra (Uttar Pradesh) (IANS) Children in a government primary school in Uttar Pradesh are being given "highly" diluted milk -- one litre of milk to 81 children -- after it has been diluted, and then diluted some more with water.
Gram Panchayat ward member Dev Patia alleged that a bucket of water was added to one litre of milk and distributed among 81 children in the primary school in Sonebhadra district's Salaibanwa area on Wednesday.
She said that as per the midday meal menu (MDM), "Tehri" (a rice dish) and milk was to be served to the children. One litre of milk was made available to the cook by the school authorities.
Then a bucket of water was added to the milk and it was distributed among the children, she added.
She said that the locals have informed her that such incidents have happened in the past too in that school.
School head Shailesh Kanaujia said: "There are 171 children enrolled in the school. Eighty-one children were present on that day. I have the responsibility to look after two schools. Milk had to be arranged for both schools and I could not monitor the quantity of milk that reached government primary school in Salaibanwa. The cook was provided the milk, which was distributed among the children and they drank it."
Basic Shiksha Adhikari (BSA) Gorakhnath Patel said: "As soon as the matter came to my knowledge, I inspected the school and sought information from the school headmaster.
"Such laxity will not be tolerated. A probe has been ordered into the matter. A team of Education Department officials will conduct a probe and submit a report within two days. Strict action will be taken against whosoever is found guilty in the probe."
Block Education Officer Mukesh Rai said that he received information from locals that water was added to the milk and served to the children. He said a probe had been ordered into the incident and strict action will be taken so that such instances are never repeated in future.
Senior Congress leader, Ajay Rai, said: "Even children are not getting a midday meal properly. The government has failed even in providing a proper meal for the children. This is an irony that diluted milk was served to the children in a government school".
In August, a government school in Mirzapur was found to be serving flat bread with salt to school children as part of the midday meal. As a video of this got viral, a few education officials were transferred while the journalist who had broken the news was sent to jail.