Aizawl, Aug 27 (UNI) With grave concern over proliferation of adulterated food items in the Aizawl market, the Mizoram Prevention of Food Adulteration (PFA) Cell is all set to conduct regular raids against such adulterated foodstuff.
Health services director Dr N Pallai said even as food sellers had been ordered to follow the guidelines of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Rules 1955, it was found that the order has been grossly violated.
''Food inspectors will regularly conduct raids on such adulterated food items and adulterants and defaulters will be liable to punishment,'' he said.
The move will be a follow-up to a countrywide drive against food adulteration and the declaration of 2008 as the Year of Food Safety and Quality.
The Mizoram Prevention of Food Adulteration, 1991, is in force in the state which includes prevention of selling adulterated food and manufacturing food without license. The punishment ranges from six months to lifetime imprisonment and a fine of upto Rs 5,000.
Food inspector Lalrinkimi Pachuau said most of the food items coming from Myanmar are found to be hazardous to health.
She said technicians at the state public health laboratories in Guwahati were shocked to learn that Mizos were still consuming food items imported from Myanmar. So, the PFA Cell will target Myanmar's food items.
It is also pointed out that traders in India also use newer adulterating materials to make food products appealing and render them dangerous to health.
''Large quantity of pulses is polished with red-coloured adulterants to make it look more attractive. The red colour can be easily washed off with water,'' she said.
The food inspectors regretted that the general public in Mizoram is not conscious about how adulterated food can risk their health.
''Only public awareness can check this menace. People should play an effective part and help us crack down on such persons,'' they said.
UNI ZS DPM RD 1416