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Rashmi Ranjan

Bhubaneswar: Ahead of the full-fledged resumption of the classes of all school students amid lingering of Covid scare, the State Mass Education department has come up with special kit to boost the immunity of the school students across Odisha.

According to sources, the Mass Education department will distribute happiness kit among the students of class I to class VIII to boost their immunity ahead of the opening of the schools in the State. The distribution of the kits will begin from the February first week.

The happiness kit will be comprised of wheat, chana, turmeric powder, cardamom, peanuts and jaggery. Moreover, there will be a pen, pencil, note pad, sanitary napkin, toothpaste, iodised salt and soap, sources informed.
In the first phase, these kits will be distributed among 1.83 lakh students of 1916 schools in five districts- Nayagarh, Puri, Cuttack, Khordha and Sundargarh through Akshaya Patra Foundation. Later, all schools across Odisha will be covered under this exercise.

"As we could not provide meals to the students due to the closure of schools, so we have come up with this initiative. Under this initiative, 1.83 lakh students of 5 districts will get the happiness kit in the first phase," said Samir Ranjan Dash, School and Mass Education minister.

"This is an effort to provide nutritious food to the students so that they can resume their physical classes with full vigour and immunity to stay safe in the Covid times," said Prashant Patra, an official of Akshaya Patra Foundation.

Meanwhile, welcoming the move by the Odisha government, parents have said it will benefit the students.

"We failed to provide nutritious food to our kids during the Covid lockdown and closure of schools so we hope that this move will be helpful for us," said Sudarsan Goud, a resident of Malkangiri.

Notably, there are more than 30 lakh students at 60,000 primary schools across Odisha. As of now, the schools across the State are yet to reopen for students of class 1 to 9 and class 11 owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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