The HRD ministry will soon monitor the mid day meal scheme through SMS updates from the principals of 11.92 lakh schools across India.
The model is based on the one already in use in Uttar Pradesh. Through the SMSs, school headmasters will be asked for daily updates.
Under the programme around 10.46 crore children are fed in government, government aided schools and at Alternative Innovative Education centers including Madarsas. For this Rs 48000 crores was allocated during the 11th five year plan. Out of which Rs 38,000 crores has been spent so far and Rs 10,380 crores has been allocated during the current year.
“We will start the pilot programme across all states by April and it will be fully functional by June,” said Amarjit Singh, Joint Secretary in the ministry.
The SMSs will be send from the newly launched website www.mdm.nic.in. The site provides detailed information on the programme through which it can be monitored and evaluated. It also has information like Programme Approval for various states and the financial progress under the scheme. It also brings out the innovative practices adopted by the various states.
HRD minister Kapil Sibal said the data will be available on the website but to ensure it is authentic a legal mechanism should be there. He said, “There should be accountability so that people can be dealt with. But it has to be done by the state government.”