In a bid to end malnutrition in the state, Madhya Pradesh government has decided to introduce eggs in the midday meal offered to children in the Anganwadis starting next month.
"This is our new scheme. Eggs will be provided to children in the midday meal offered to children in the Anganwadis from November. All we care about is ending malnutrition and ensuring that our children are taken care of," state Women and Child Development Minister Imarti Devi told ANI on Wednesday.
She said that a similar scheme was also prepared during the tenure of previous government "but they did not implement it."
"We have taken several initiatives and introduced various schemes for the welfare of children in the state, be it 313 Anganwadis, eggs in mid-day meal or the new bus service to take care of children when their parents go to work," she said.
Commenting on opposition parties criticizing the scheme, Devi said: "We don't care about the opposition to this scheme. All we care about is that the children get the nutrition they need."
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Rameshwar Sharma, on the other hand, raised questions about the arrangements made for vegetarian children.
"There is no question of objecting to any scheme of the state government. All we are saying is that vegetarian children also come to these Anganwadis and that separate arrangement should be made for them as well," he said.
Sharma also slammed the Congress saying that it is the Chief Minister Kamal Nath-led state government that is "malnutritioned".
Meanwhile, BJP spokesperson Rahul Kothari alleged a conspiracy behind the decision.
"BJP government also took several key initiatives to end malnutrition in the state and we also won several international awards for the same. We think this decision by the state government is a part of a larger conspiracy. If an attempt is made to harm the religious culture of the country, we will not accept it," he said.
"We had also prevented the state government's attempt to sell chicken and milk next to each other... The state government should work as per the culture in the country," Kothari added.
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