Over 30 madrasas in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh are refusing midday meals for their students as the food allegedly comes from places of Hindu worship, reports ANI. According to the report carried in the Business Standard, the madrassas claim that sending food offered to Hindu deities is an attempt to defile their faith.
Since 2010, the food was being catered by Iskcon temple. However, with parents of students in the madrasas believing that the providers would offer the food to Hindu gods before sending it to the schools, the administrators in these schools have refused to accept food from Iskcon.
Isckon’s tender ended in 2016, and it was replaced by two other suppliers, BRK Foods and Ma Parvati Foods. However, the madrasas have refused the services of these suppliers as well. Of the 315 schools BRK Foods supplies, 56 madrasas have now declined their services.
Further, parents have threatened to withdraw their children from madrasas that continue to be supplied by these agencies, insisting that the food be cooked in-house in the madrassas, rather than being supplied from elsewhere.
Officials, however, denied these reasons for the stoppage of services, and claimed that it was because the children were accustomed to other kinds of food. The issue is being probed further.