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India: Dead earthworm found in Odisha mid-day meal

The meal was immediately withdrawn and students were given biscuits instead

Gulf News

Bhubaneswar/Panaji: In one school, they found a dead earthworm in the mid-day meal and in another a dead spider.

The distribution of the mid-day meal was cancelled for a day in a Odisha school after a dead earthworm was allegedly found in a curry, an official said on Saturday.

The worm was detected in the soya curry on Friday during a routine inspection by school staff at the government primary school at Regedi in Ganjam district before it was served to the children.

The meal was immediately cancelled and students were given biscuits instead of the cooked meal, local administrative official Subhransu Mishra said.

Nandi Foundation, a Chennai-based NGO which supplies mid-day meals in large number of schools in the district, has been asked to submit an explanation, he added.

“We have also submitted a report to the authorities about the incident and appropriate steps would be taken after we get a response from Nandi Foundation,” Mishra said.

Odisha provides mid-day meals to more than five million school children between the age group of six to twelve and supplementary nutrition to about two million pre-school children of ages up to six years and below.

In Goa, 20 students of a secondary school were on Saturday admitted to a hospital when they started to vomit after eating the mid-day meal. The students said they saw a dead spider in the food, an official said.

The incident occurred in Kamleshwar School in Pernem.

“The children are in hospital and their condition is stable,” the education department official said.

On July 19, 20 primary school students were admitted to hospital after some of them fell ill after a mid-day meal at a school in Ponda in eastern Goa. Students of a school in Canacona in south Goa were hospitalised June 23 after eating mid-day meal.