The ongoing tussle between the Bangalore and Mumbai centres of International Society for Krishna Consciousness (Iskcon) to control the temple premises in the city could affect 5.5 lakh school students in Karnataka.
The row has resulted in dearth of funds and Iskcon Bangalore has decided to drop its expansion plans, particularly the flagship project — the mid-day meal scheme for school students through Akshaya Patra Foundation.
Iskcon Bangalore was planning to extend the mid-day meal service to another 1 lakh students this year. However, it has now shelved the plan because of the legal battle.
The legal battle has also affected the flow of donations and Iskcon Bangalore is left with few options, but to drop its expansion plans.
“Though high court of Karnataka has ordered Mumbai Iskcon not to disturb the mid-day meal scheme of Akshaya Patra Foundation run by Bangalore Iskcon, but practically we are facing several problems. It is very difficult to manage. We are trying to overcome the problems and continue the mid-day meal scheme, but in the coming days it may get hit,” said sources in Iskcon Bangalore.
According to the sources, if the same situation continued, it might have to stop the service or quality of food might suffer. The state government is offering just ¤3 a meal for the scheme, but Iskcon says it is spending ¤6 a meal, thereby offering the service at 50% discount.
Through the mid-day meal scheme, Iskcon Bangalore feeds 2.2 lakh students in the city. Over 13 lakh students in eight states also benefit from the scheme.
Bangalore Iskcon also feeds over 10,000 people in Bangalore under the senior citizen feeding project.