The Mid-Day Meal Scheme entitles every child in primary and upper primary levels in all government and government-assisted schools in all parts of the country of a clean, nutritious, hot-cooked meal during school days in a minimum of 200 days.
In drought-affected areas the meal shall be served on summer vacations. This meal should contain in minimum 300 grams calorie and eight (8) grams protein.
The stipulated allocation for cooking cost per child a day for the mid-day-meal scheme is Rs. 2.50 at the primary and Rs. 3.75 at the upper primary. Moreover, the central government contributes per child a day 100 grams food-grain at the primary level and 150 grams food-grain at the upper primary level. This means that the cooking cost for the meal is shared by the central government and the state government in a proportion of 75 percent (75%) by 25 percent (25%). The case is however different in states at North Eastern Region; they share the cost in a proportion of 90 percent (90%) by 10 percent (10%).
A provision on the scheme which covers the cook at the same time helper says that one may be engaged by a school with 25 enrollees, two with 26-100 students, and additional one for every 100 students. Each cook vis-à-vis helper has to receive Rs. 1000 a month payment.
MDM Court Order Summary
- The State Governments/Union Territories to implement the Mid-Day-Meal Scheme by providing every child in every Government and Government assisted Primary Schools with a prepared mid-day-meal with a minimum content of 300 calorie and 8-12 grams of protein each day of school for a minimum of 200 days. (SC Order dated 28 November 2001)
- Mid-day-meal has to be provided to every school child throughout the summer vacation in all drought-affected areas. (SC Order dated 20 April 2004)
- Mid-day-meal has to be free of cost to all school children under any circumstances. (SC Order dated 20 April 2004)
- Preference shall be given to Dalits, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in appointing of cooks/helpers. (SC Order dated 20 April 2004)
- The Central Government is directed to allot provisions for construction of kitchen sheds and also contribute to the cooking costs of the mid-day-meal. (SC Order dated 20 April 2004)
- State Governments are directed to apportion provisions for quality infrastructure; facilities i.e. drinking water and toilets; monitoring e.g. regular inspection; and other safeguards to ensure nutritious meal to children at primary schools. (SC Order dated 20 April 2004)
- The Central Government is directed to allocate funds to meet the conversion costs of food-grain into cooked mid-day-meal. Provisions have to be allocated as well for construction of kitchen sheds and improvement of infrastructures and facilities for the delivery of mid-day-meal.