Parents protest midday meal cooked by widow

Parents protest midday meal cooked by widow

Days after the Centre ordered schools to get the midday meal tasted by parents, a school in Bihar’s Gopalganj district witnessed a shameful incident when a group of parents locked its gate and forced the children to go home to protest the existing system in which a widow cooked the meal.

The incident took place in Kalyanpur Government Middle School at Barauli where the parents protested and asked why a widow was allowed to cook food. The ugly fracas had taken place earlier, too, following which the widow Sunita Kunwar, working as a cook for the last two years, was shown the door.

The state education committee decided to replace Sunita with Babita Devi. But an aggrieved Sunita moved DM office and lodged a complaint urging him to redress her grievance.

The DM ordered the ADM concerned to inquire and submit a report. After inquiry, the widow was reinstated. The school principal Mithileshwar Kumar Singh ensured that Sunita resumed her job.

The news reached the villagers. Enraged over the report that their children “would have to eat food prepared by a widow”, they reached the school, locked its gate and forced the children to go home.

District Education Officer (DEO) Ashok Kumar has, meanwhile, termed the incident as reprehensible.

“It’s a matter of shame and regret. How can parents forcibly enter a school and lock it while protesting that the food was being cooked by a widow. A case has been lodged in this connection and investigation ordered,” he said.

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