Compensate Children Who Didn’t Get Mid-Day Meals: Karnataka HC

The HC asked the government to submit by 17 November its plan to compensate students who didn’t get mid-day meals.

2 min read
The HC asked the government to submit by 17 November, its plan to compensate students who didn’t get mid-day meals.

The Karnataka High Court has asked the state government to clarify the time and manner in which the school students who are entitled to mid-day meals, but didn’t receive a single morsel due to the coronavirus pandemic since 31 May, would be compensated, reports Live Law.

The directive came after the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Karnataka government admitted that it was unable to implement provisions of the National Food Security Act 2013, read together with the Mid-day Means Rules, 2015.

A division bench of Justices Abhay Oka and Aravind Kumar said that irrespective of the closure of local body, government and government-aided schools, the state government under National Food Security Act 2013 is required to provide children with mid-day meals.

What the National Food Security Act, 2013 Says

  • According to the act, children in the age group of six months to six years are entitled to free, age appropriate meals through the local anganwadi so as to meet the nutritional standards specified in Schedule II.
  • It also says children up to class 8 or within the age group of 6 to 14 years shall be entitled to one mid-day meal for free on every day, except for school holidays from schools run by local bodies, and government and government-aided schools.

Saying that a lapse on part of the government in providing meals would violate the constitutional rights of children, as mentioned in the act, the high court asked the Secretary in charge of the concerned department to file an affidavit by 17 November.

The court asked the concerned Secretary to mention how the entitled students would be compensated, while also asking for plan for providing entitled students with either mid-day meal or food grains.

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