A photograph of a young student standing in front of his school while holding a plateful with food items including paneer, puris, cucumbers, apple and ice-cream is going viral on social media platforms. Posts by users also carried two more similar images, with the claim that the vibrant menu was served for mid-day meals to school kids under the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh. Newschecker found the claim to be misleading.
Several Twitter and Facebook users shared the post claiming to show the mid-day meal menu under the Yogi government.
We spotted “क्षेत्र-जालौन” written on the wall behind the student in the viral video. Taking a cue, we looked up for keywords “Jalaun Mid Day Meal” on Google which led us to a report by ABP News, dated September 5, 2022. Displaying the viral images, the report elaborated on “Tithi Bhojan ” and “add on mid-day meal” programme at a government school in Jalaun’s Malakpura.
Talking about the add on mid day meal programme, Malakpura Sarpanch Amit reportedly said that the scheme started around December-January (2021-22). He was at the school to meet students ahead of the winter break, and a student expressed their desire to have something “special” in the mid-day meal. When Amit enquired about what they wanted to eat, ‘Matar Paneer,’ student replied. Following which, he along with the school’s teacher came up with the concept of add on mid day meal.
The Sarpanch further said that under the add on programme, few additional dishes are added to the state government’s mid-day meal menu. He told ABP News that it is possible due to people’s participation and their support.
Further, we conducted a Google reverse image search on both of the viral images along with keywords “’तिथि भोजन” “’एड ऑन मिड डे मील”, “मलकपुरा,” which led us to the Facebook profile of Amit.
On scrolling through the feed, we found that the viral pictures were posted on his account on August 31, 2022 with the caption which roughly translates to “Today’s Tithi Bhojan (Add on MDM) at the school.” The post further listed all the offerings of the meal.
Notably, Amit shared the same post with the caption, “Thanks to Mr Saurabh Shukla for today’s fun.”
The post also carried a picture showing a group of students holding a white board wishing “Saurabh Bhaiya ” on his birthday, implying that the ‘Tithi Bhojan’ was arranged by one Saurabh Shukla on the occasion of his birthday.
Newschecker Hindi Team further reached out to Amit who confirmed that the viral images are of a school in his Panchayat. He added, “When I visited the school last year in December, I asked the students what they would like to eat for the meal. The children said that they wanted something good like ‘matar paneer.’ I assured them that when the school reopens, the students will get it. Then in February, when the school reopened, we arranged matar paneer, rasgulla etc. Seeing the enthusiasm of the children, we decided to transform this into an entire system and came up with the concept of add-on mid day meal. Under this, students get vegetables like matar panner for a day or two during the month, sweets for one or two days and fruits. This work is possible because of public participation.”
He also shared a photograph of the add on mid day meal menu with the Newschecker Hindi team. The same can be seen below.
The official menu of the UP government mid-day meal programme can be seen below.
Viral posts claiming to show the mid-day meal at a government school in Uttar Pradesh under Yogi Adityanath are misleading.
Result: Partly False
Report By ABP News, Dated September 5, 2022
Facebook Post By @amitbharteey, Dated August 31, 2022
Contact With Malakpura Gram Pradhan Amit
(With inputs from Shubham Singh of Newschecker Hindi team)
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