IMPHAL, July 16: A case has been registered under the Food Security Act, 2006, regarding the recent seizure of edible oil from a Mantripukhri godown, after test results of the samples sent for test has proved adulteration.
This was stated by Health and Family Welfare minister, Phungzathang Tonsing replying to a calling attention motion raised by opposition leader, AIC MLA Dr I Ibohalbi on the fourth day of the ongoing full Budget session.
The minister informed the House that the involved trader’s licence has been cancelled and the godown sealed.
Highlighting the penalties the perpetrator could face, which include a fine of Rs one to two lakh or imprisonment, Phungzathang further assured action against the trader.
The government has not taken the issue lightly as it is a matter of health of the entire State, said Pungzathang adding that even the Chief Minister had shared his concern on the issue.
He further divulged that due to lack of funds, the department concerned could not employ enough man power besides the designated officers in each district. However, he assured the House of the government’s initiative in meeting the required man power in the department within a month.
Meanwhile, the Health minister also revealed that another three cases of oil adulteration have been taken up by the department however he declined to share the details with the House citing that all three were in the initial stages of investigation.
Raising his motion, Dr I Ibohalbi Singh compared the trader’s act to slow poisoning and went on to say that it was a challenge to the tradition and culture of the State irrespective of hills and valley.
The opposition leader further questioned whether it was an attempt to wipe out the entire populace of Manipur?
Recalling the event based on news reports published in local dailies, Dr I Ibohalbi said that the adulterated oil and betel nuts were seized from the godown of Ajay traders whose owner is Molchand Pawar of Rajasthan.
Over Rs 30 lakhs worth adulterated oil was seized and found other tampered containers, he said.
Further claiming that Molchand has fled to Rajasthan, he questioned how the government will take action against the perpetrator.
He also questioned on the number of the registered businessmen of edible oil in the State and the procedure of the functioning of food safety officers in the State adding suggestions to deploy food safety officers at strategic check posts including Moreh, Jiribam and Mao gate.