Mid-day Meal Mess: Jharkhand

As the news cycles move on and start to forget about the recent mid-day meal tragedy in Bihar, Community Correspondent Xavier Hamsay brings a video documenting the lack of mid-day meal infrastructure. The video serves to remind us that such accidents are unfortunately not one-off incidents of negligence but the result of a larger systemic failure in the implementation of well meaning schemes.
The primary school in Jalmay Village in West Singhbhum District, Jharkhand has 81 students. The mid day meal served here is a major attraction for the children who come here. The kitchen where the meals are prepared is an accident waiting to happen.
In the absence of a proper kitchen a make-shift thatched roof has been serving as the kitchen to prepare the mid day meals in. The cooks share the space with a few resident scorpions and the occasional snake-- proteins that the children could do without.
Francis Xavier, the Head Teacher of the school fears for the safety of his students.
"What will happen if something falls into the food? They will blame us wont they?"
With the monsoon in full swing things are even more difficult for the cooks at the school. The wood for the cooking fire is wet from the rain and the meals inevitable get delayed. Add to that the number of diseases and infections that are rampant in the season. 
"We had submitted an application to the Block Development Officer and the CST himself said that a proposal for a proper kitchen had been made. I haven't heard anything after that," says Francis.
Community Correspondent Xavier urges you to make a call that could help prevent the next  mid day meal casualty. 
Call to Action: Please call the Block Officer, Mr. Pitambaram Roy on 09471382310 and ask him to set up a kitchen for Jalmay Primary School immediately.
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