Karnataka government mulls midday meals in pvt schools

It may be recalled that during the Siddaramaiah-led previous Congress regime, the government had withdrawn the midday meal facility served by the Kollur temple to the children of the school run by RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat.

In a major move, the state government is mulling to extend its ambitious midday meal scheme to private unaided Kannada medium schools, thanks to a "request" made by top RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat.

Bhat is also associated with the running of a private unaided Kannada medium school. 

Confirming the move, sources in the department of public instructions confirmed to DH that they have been gathering district-wise data of unaided Kannada medium schools run by private managements. "Further to the orders from higher-ups, we have communicated to all Deputy Directors of Public Instructions (DDPI) to provide information of the number of private unaided Kannada medium schools at the earliest," said an official from the department.

The move follows a recent request made by one of the private unaided Kannada schools run by Bhat. As per details accessed by DH, Bhat submitted a request to Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa seeking an extension of midday meal scheme to private unaided Kannada medium schools. "The CM discussed the same with primary and secondary education minister S Suresh Kumar," mentioned a source.

As per the information, the file is now pending before the principal secretary of primary and secondary education S R Umashankar for final orders. 

Currently, midday meals are served at government and private aided schools across the state, the majority in association with non-governmental organisations.

Umashankar said, "The file regarding extension of the scheme to private unaided Kannada medium schools is under consideration."

It may be recalled that during the Siddaramaiah-led previous Congress regime, the government had withdrawn the midday meal facility served by the Kollur temple to the children of the school run by Prabhakar Bhat. The reason cited was that the temple belonged to the Mujarai department and also several people took objection to the food provided by the temple to a private school.

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