Food for learning
The mid-day meals dished out to primary schoolchildren across the country under orders of the Supreme Court are still to meet expectations. The record in the northern states is patchy: good only in parts. Faced with inadequate infrastructure, pilferage, poor quality of food and official apathy, the scheme has a long way to go before it meets the objectives of improving school attendance and health of students. The
Tribune reporters look at what’s cooking in schools of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal, Chandigarh, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh
|PLUS POINT: Attendance in Haryana schools has shot up, thanks to the mid-day meal.
— Photo by Malkiat Singh
The food served in most primary schools in Delhi is of poor
quality. — Photo by Mukesh Aggarwal
|Schools in Punjab have inadequate set-up to cook food.
— Photo by Vicky Gharu
|Kids line up for the meal in a school in Chaura
Maidan, Shimla. — Photo by Anil Dayal
|Haryana officials are satisfied with the running of the scheme.
— Photo by Malkiat Singh
||For many kids in Madhopur, this is their first meal of the day.
Missing kitchens, stores
Chitleen K. Sethi
In rural Punjab where only the poorest of the poor send their kids to government primary schools, it is almost a wonder that the central mid-day meal scheme has actually been implemented and with some measure of success.
Orderly and methodical
The Chandigarh Administration has fared much better in implementing the scheme ever since it was envisaged in 1995. Since the city is small and more manageable, the administration is following the centralised cooking method.
Fall in dropout rate
Little Yogesh, a resident of the nearby slums, doesn't miss any of his classes at the Government Primary School, Sector 4, Panchkula. He's among some of the most regular students in class. His incentive: Haryana Government's nutritious mid-day meal.
| HIMACHAL PRADESH
With enrolment already touching 99 per cent and no visible signs of “hunger” in the state, the mid-day meal scheme does not hold much attraction either for the education authorities or the children. The hill state has its share of poverty but the people are not so poor as would make them send their children to school for meals.
Low on quality, poor in hygiene
In January, 2006, the Delhi police unearthed a massive scam in the Central Government-sponsored mid-day meal scheme, seizing eight truckloads of rice meant for primary schoolchildren that was allegedly being siphoned off by a UP-based NGO in connivance with government officials.
| UTTAR PRADESH
No impact on attendance
Some 58 children from Class I to V sit listlessly on the floor huddled in one room of the Madhopur primary school in Dubagga on the outskirts of Lucknow. The headmistress perched on the lone table and chair sits routinely calling out names.
Bowled over by what’s Down Under
Cricket holds millions captive. Myths and legends have been built around it, friends and enemies are made over a scoreboard. The mystic appeal of the pitch captivates
Ranjita Biswas on her visit to the famous cricket grounds in Australia
After four years, once again cricket fever has gripped fans as the World Cup excitement froths to the brim. No less in focus are the cricket grounds where men in blues, greens or yellows aspire to hold up national pride.
FASCINATING TURF: The Melbourne
Cricket Ground has many firsts to its credit.
Indian art goes places
Contemporary Indian art is one of the very best in the world and its form is vital today for the overall growth
of art, reports
||Modern Indian art is not only being picked up by exclusive clients but is going places with artists travelling worldwide and putting up exhibitions to showcase their works at exotic venues.
Celebration-III by Paresh Maity. Oil on canvas, 2003
Toast to a real heroine
She left the film world when she was at the height of stardom to serve the wounded during World War II. Britain recently raised a memorial honouring Madeleine Carroll’s life and achievements
was the first of Alfred Hitchcock’s ice-cool blondes when she
starred in the thriller The 39 Steps and went on to become the
highest-paid actress of her age. But when her sister was killed in
the Blitz, Madeleine Carroll lost the taste for movies. She began
volunteering for the Red Cross during the war and later became an
active campaigner for children through the United Nations’ agency
Good films, bad show
MAMI was a classless festival earlier but that seems to be changing. It remains badly organised though, writes
Ervell E. Menezes
9th Mumbai Academy of the Moving Image (MAMI) festival, like its
earlier versions, continues to make news for the wrong reasons. Bad
organisation is one of these. After nine years, there are still
teething troubles. May be it is competing with IFFI Goa in that
respect but like at Goa there was a high percentage of good
The Curse of the Golden Flower, in the top bracket on World Cinema, was the opening Chinese film.
Power of the unseen
Great film-makers love to stroke the audiences’ imagination by not showing everything to them, writes
master director stamps his class not only with what he shows on screen
but also with what he does not. Leaving something to the viewers’
imagination, instead of revealing or explaining it all, is a gamble
very few film-makers are keen to take. Alfred Hitchcock’s first
American film, Rebecca (1940), deservingly ranks among the
greatest classics of cinema. Its unique feature is that the title
character never appears in the movie, even though the whole story
revolves around her.
A terrorised Joan Fontaine (right) with Judith Anderson in Rebecca