Minister for Fisheries Vinod Palyekar has said that the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) officials testing fish samples at the state’s border check-posts for adulterants must check at least a few crates from each fish container.
He was speaking to the media on the sidelines of a cultural programme at the Ravindra Bhavan in Margao recently.
Officials of the FDA are currently checking fish imported from other states for adulterants, at the border check-posts by testing random fish samples from the trucks carrying fish.
The minister said, “I am not an expert to comment but I feel that the FDA should check at least three-four crates from each fish-laden truck. I also know that all the fish cannot be checked by FDA, as it will take a lot of time and fish being a perishable item, it can get spoiled,” he said.
Stating that there is a need for a mechanism on this and that a collective decision needs to be arrived at, Palyekar said, “The issue being a controversial one, I feel Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar would be the best to speak on it. Presently, the Chief Minister is out of station. Once he returns, I will meet him to discuss this issue.”
With allegations of the FDA officials checking very few samples of fish, the formalin-in-fish scare continues in the state and fish eaters are reluctant to consume fish. Despite local fish hitting the markets and import of fish resumed, the fish markets are still not frequented by people. This pattern is worrying fish vendors, who are demanding that the government adopt a mechanism so that the people repose their faith in FDA.