The Akshaya Patra Foundation commonly known as Akshaya Patra is a non-profit organisation in India that runs school lunch programme across India. The foundation is based in Bengaluru, Karnataka, and plays a major role in supplying meals to schools in various parts of the country. Primarily, it has plans to supply Mid-day Meals (MDM) to 32 schools in the Nagpur city, with its base kitchen located at Wathoda, in Nagpur. They will serve food to approximately 20,000 students of the Nagpur Municipal Corporation and Zilla Parishad-run schools in Nagpur.
A Los Angeles based couple; the Tilaks have sponsored the MDM. The NRI couple Ravi and Vandana Tilak contributed Rs.2.50 crore for the project. Vandana who is chair of the foundation’s Los Angeles chapter, has sponsored the project in her father Bapu Dalal’s memory. The pilot project was recently launched with the help of the Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, the foundation, and the NMC.
Importantly, the Mid-day Meals scheme in Maharashtra will now be examined and monitored in almost real time. The data will be uploaded by schools on a daily basis, with the help of an Android application. A portal is made to collect data related to MDM. This is the first digital India campaign to make progress and development into the non-academic aspects of the education field. The data will include the number of students on roll, number of students present every day, their daily requirement and consumption each day. Therefore, the information and its progress can be tracked.
The organisation was established in 2000. This foundation has taken a good initiative, to ensure hygiene and quality of food, with a proper menu to avoid monotony and to ensure that children get a good balanced diet. Once the Mid-Day Meal Scheme was mandated centrally by the Government of India in 2003, Akshaya Patra partnered with the Government to serve cooked meals at all Government schools. 13 chapters of the foundation are established in the US, each comprising of 20 Indians who are all raising funds for the proposed 70 MDM kitchens across India.