Friday, July 28, 2017

ISKCON Akshaya Patra Foundation May End Mid Day Meal Contract

The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) reportedly decided to terminate the mid-meal contract as the state government gave instructions to supply eggs to students as part of the menu.

It may be stated here that the ISKCON has been providing mid-day meal to students of government schools with a service motive for the last few years. According to official information, the ISKCON is supplying mid-day meal for 46,725 students of 464 schools in 11 mandals. 

They are Tirupati (Urban), Tirupati (Rural), Renigunta, Vadamalapet, Ramachandrapuram, Puttur, Piler, Kalikiri, Chinnagottigallu, Yerravanipalem, and Yerpedu. The religious institution believes that egg is a non-vegetarian food. Even though, it is mandatory for the ISKCON to supply eggs to the students in the midday meal as per the prescribed menu. But, it has been offering fruits in place of eggs.

 The ISKCON had made it clear that it won’t provide eggs in the midday meal due to their religious belief. But, the state government instructed the ISKCON to provide eggs to the students as per the recommendation of the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN). As a result, the ISKCON reportedly decided to terminate mid-day meal contract.

 It may be recalled that voluntary organisations, student unions and the Left parties were demanding that the government should cancel the contract with the ISKCON as the religious body failed to provide eggs to the students. Two days ago, the NIN said that egg is mandatory in the mid-day meal and alternative food should not be supplemented.

 District Collector P S Pradyumna has instructed the DEO to follow the instructions of the NIN and hand over mid-day meal contract to another agency. 

Speaking to The Hans India here on Wednesday, DEO Samuel said that egg must be provided in midday meal for students. “We are exploring possibilities of providing three eggs per week as part of midday meal scheme through other agency,” he added. The DEO stated that the implementation of the scheme will be entrusted to DWCRA groups if the ISKCON decides to quit the contract.

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