As most of us would know that Tamil Nadu was the first state to start Midday Meal Scheme in the 1960’s, which involves provision of lunch free of cost to school-children on all working days. In 1982, the then Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Dr. M. G. Ramachandran, decided to universalize the scheme for all children up to class 10. Tamil Nadu’s midday meal programme is among the best known in the country. It would be good to know that Madras started providing cooked meals to children in corporation schools in the Madras city way back in 1923.
In the year 1995, the central government under P V Narsimha Rao adopted the “National Programme for Nutrition Support to Primary Education”. Then, on November 28, 2001 the Supreme Court of India gave a famous direction that made it mandatory for the state governments to provide cooked meals instead of ‘dry rations’. After free mid-day meal, Tamil Nadu may soon get free breakfast too. According to sources, the breakfast menu in Tamil Nadu may comprise milk, bun, rava, with some variations. Infact some private and corporation schools in the state have already started providing free breakfast in a bid to boost attendance and learning levels. Interestingly, Puducherry, has the Shri Rajiv Gandhi Breakfast Scheme in all government schools and it was one of the pioneers in universal school feeding as early as 1930.
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