BJP blames TMC leader after Hooghly school serves rice and salt for mid-day meal, probe ordered

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Published: August 20, 2019 12:23:38 PM

BJP MP Locket Chatterjee rushed to the school and alleged that government funds allocated for the meal were being siphoned off by a local TMC leader.

bengal mid-day meal. hooghly mid day meal, locket chatterjeeBJP MP Locket Chatterjee interacting with school girls who were served rice and salt in mid-day meal in Hooghly. (Photo/BJP4Bengal)

Bengal mid-day meal controversy: A fresh chapter opened in the ongoing tussle between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the ruling Trinamool Congress over mid-day meal served at a school in Hooghly. Soon after reports emerged on Monday that girls at a school in Hooghly district were being served boiled rice and salt for lunch, BJP MP Locket Chatterjee rushed to the school and alleged that government funds allocated for the meal were being siphoned off by a local TMC leader.

She claimed that the school was allocated Rs 25,000 for eggs and 257 packets of rice for mid-day meal. However, the children were not provided with meal as per the menu prescribed by the authorities. Chatterjee insisted that a local Trinamool leader was behind the funds being diverted.

“After receiving complaints for months over the mid-day meal scam in the school, today I decided to visit the school. I was shocked to witness that the students were forced to have only rice and salt,” The Indian Express quoted the BJP MP, as saying. The BJP’s Bengal unit also tweeted a video of the MP interacting with schoolgirls having the food provided to them.

Probe ordered

State education minister Partha Chatterjee was quick to respond to the charges and said that a departmental probe has been ordered. He urged the BJP to stay away from politicising the issue.

“It is inhuman for anyone to be involved in any graft with regard to mid-day meals meant for little boys and girls,” Partha Chatterjee said, adding that the government maintains ‘zero tolerance’ towards any graft concerning mid-day meals and those involved will be dealt strictly.

“There should not be any change in the original mid-day meal menu. The state government will do whatever needed to ensure that on an immediate basis. The government will award strict punishment to anyone found to be involved in depriving school children of mid-day meals,” he said.

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