Thursday , 17 October 2019
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HC asks govt to get expert help to ascertain formalin quantity inherent in fish

PANAJI: The High Court of Bombay at Goa has asked the state government to avail of services of expert professors and researchers from a university, preferably in Maharashtra, to carry out a research on quantity of formalin inherent in fish.

The High Court observed that, whatever material is on record before the court in all clubbed petitions, will be sent to the competent university requesting to submit a report on ‘formalin in fish’ issue.

The High Court has adjourned the hearing to next week in a case related to formalin issue.

Shivraj Kamat Tarcar had filed a plea seeking an inquiry into the entire episode of July 12 whereby traces of formalin/formaldehyde were found in the initial spot tests and subsequently, the formalin was found to be in permissible limit. The petitioner has sought various directions to the government including setting up of a mechanism for testing of fish, fruits and vegetables before they are sold.

The High Court, during an earlier hearing, had directed Food Safety and Standards Authority of India to expedite the process of setting the permissible limit of formalin in fish. It may be noted that during the earlier hearing, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India contended that it is for the first time any query related to presence of formalin in fish had come before them, which is why there was no standard limit set for formalin in fish.

FSSAI further contended that the issue has been assigned to the expert scientific panel and the report is awaited. Though, FSSAI placed on record one advisory which suggests that up to 4mg of formalin is found inherent in ocean fish. Hence, that quantity should be considered as permissible limit on ad hoc basis.

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