In a bid to provide nutritious food, the Madhya Pradesh government has decided to distribute eggs to Anganwadi children and pregnant women from April 2020.
The Kamal Nath-led Congress government in the state has proposed to provide eggs for three days a week from April 1, 2020. However, the government has maintained that eating eggs will be voluntary and those who will not eat eggs will be given fruits of the same price.
A total of 10 lakh children and women will get benefits. An annual expenditure of Rs 113 crores will be done on the scheme.
The Women and Child Development Department (WCD) will now send the file to the Finance Department for budget allocation.
The government's argument over this step is to increase the nutrition intake in children and that along with fruits and milk the intake of eggs are also important. Currently, nine states in the country are providing eggs for one to five days.
The BJP has opposed this initiative by the Madhya Pradesh government. In October, BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya had said that he will oppose Madhya Pradesh government`s proposal. "We will oppose this. I think there should not be interference in the religious beliefs of the people."
BJP spokesperson Rahul Kothari had alleged a conspiracy behind the decision. "BJP government also took several key initiatives to end malnutrition in the state and we also won several international awards for the same. We think this decision by the state government is a part of a larger conspiracy. If an attempt is made to harm the religious culture of the country, we will not accept it. We had also prevented the state government`s attempt to sell chicken and milk next to each other...The state government should work as per the culture in the country," Kothari had added.