Chandigarh: The Haryana government has ordered a review of the mid-day meal scheme in government-run schools after 100 students in Kurukshetra district last week ended up in hospitals after consuming the school meal, a minister said Monday.
Haryana Finance Minister H.S. Chattha said the policy of preparing mid-day meal would be reviewed and officials who were playing with the health of children would not be spared at any cost.
In two separate incidents in Kurukshetra last week, over 100 students from government schools in three villages -- Doda Khedi, Gobindgarh and Ruan -- had to be rushed to hospitals after they consumed the free meal.
Health officials found that in one instance, the food served contained a dead lizard while in the second incident, the food was contaminated.
Chattha, who visited Ruan village to enquire about the health of the hospitalised children, said that good quality food should be served to children as per the scheme.
"Two-three cases of children falling ill after taking mid-day meal in the district had come to the notice. This indicated gross negligence which would not be tolerated at any cost," Chattha said.
The minister ordered the officers to constitute a committee to look into the incident. He also directed health department officials to test the samples of the meal being served to children.
The minister directed Additional Deputy Commissioner Sumedha Kataria to personally look into the matter and submit a report at the earliest.
Residents of affected villages appealed to the finance minister to take action against the headmasters of the schools.
A central government scheme, the mid-day meal is served to draw children, especially from poor families, to school to get education.