Berhampur (Odisha), Sep 20: At least 77 students were taken ill after consuming mid-day meal at a government-run upper primary school at Sameiguda in Odisha's Ganjam district, officials said on Sunday.
A dead lizard was reportedly found in the food served to a Class VII student of the school located in Aska area yesterday, they said.
"The students who fell ill were admitted to Aska hospital. All of them are out of danger. The doctors, however, kept them under observation for some hours," said Binita Senapati, assistant district education officer, who is also in charge block education officer (BEO), Aska.
She along with the assistant block development officer, Aska visited the hospital. District Education Officer (DEO) Sanatana Panda ordered the ADEO to inquire into the incident. "Action would be taken against the persons, who found guilty in the inquiry," said DEO.
The official said the school has 108 students from Class I to VIII. Around 80 of them were present yesterday and all of them consumed the mid-day meal.
"A dead lizard was found from the plate of a student while they were consuming the food. Soon the children started vomiting and complained of stomach pain," said ADEO.
All the students were rushed to the hospital in phases in ambulance. The news of a lizard in the MDM spread like wildfire and anxious parents gathered at the hospital. Before serving to the students, the mid-day meal was tasted by the head master of the school, cook and helper, the preliminary inquiry revealed, she said.
They were, however, not feeling uneasy after consuming the food, she said. Since the school authorities did not keep any food samples for test, we will record the statements of the students, teachers, cook and helpers and members of the school management committee (SMC) to inquiry into the matter, said ADEO.