no mid day meals for telangana students as workers give ‘chalo hyderabad’ call
Millions of students in state-run schools across Telangana were left without mid-day meals over the past couple of days as 54,000 MDM workers have been on strike, strengthening demands for a hike in wages and an immediate release of pending bills.
Students Asked To Bring Their Own Lunch Boxes
The strike has created a major supply disruption across the state. In order to mitigate the impact, the Telangana education department has called for alternative arrangements. But parents report some schools have been unable to resume the scheme due to various reasons.
75 – 80% of the total enrollment in the state-run schools, representing approximately 2.3 million students, depend on mid-day meals. The strike’s impact on students has been tremendous. They have been asked to bring their tiffin boxes for the time being.
The striking workers are looking to strengthen their calls for immediate fulfilment of their demands. Despite an earlier order to raise the honorarium amount from Rs 1,000 to Rs 3,000, MDM workers claim they haven’t received the payment yet.
No End In Sight As Workers Plan ‘Chalo Hyderabad’ Protest
The workers’ union has called for a protest rally on Thursday to submit a memorandum to the government. Requesting anonymity, a worker from Karimnagar said the government’s response to their demands will decide the future of action.
Meanwhile, the strike – apart from heftily affecting the daily meals of millions of students across Telangana – could also increase dropout rates, as a number of families from economically disadvantaged backgrounds depend on these meals as an incentive to send their kids to school.
Outstanding bills owed by the government to the agencies responsible for preparing the daily meals have been blamed, the worker said. While agencies in Nalgonda are owed Rs 1.3 crore, pending bills amount to Rs 1.4 crore and Rs 1.81 crore in Suryapet and Yadadri-Bhuvanagiri districts, respectively.