Millennium Post

Stalls, shops get KMC notice for using industrial ice to cool liquids

Wish to enjoy a glass of chilled juice or lassi in this heat? Think again.

Several shops in Esplanade area were raided and industrial ice seized by the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) on Wednesday. These are the shops from where scores drink everyday to quench their thirst. And now, it has come to light that the ice which is used is the same one that is used in mortuaries to preserve dead bodies.

Notices have been served against the owners of those shops. A shop on Mirza Ghalib Street that used to supply industrial ice has also been served notice. The KMC is all set to take the legal course against them.

Acting on a tip off, a KMC team led by Atin Ghosh, member, Mayor in Council (health) visited around 16-17 shops selling lassi and fruit juice in areas surrounding Esplanade. It was found that the owners had been using industrial ice to cool the liquid, which is a strict no-no according to regulations.

Atin Ghosh said the ice blocks which were found in the shops had been seized and destroyed. He said for quite some time KMC had been receiving complaints that some shop owners were using industrial ice to cool lassi and fruit juices. There are over 50 stalls and another 50 handcarts in Esplanade area selling these items in summer. Because of excessive heat, people have a tendency to take them. Hundreds of people visiting Esplanade and its neighbourhood areas takecold lassi and fruit juice every day. "So we have to be careful and such drives would be conducted in the future too to ensure that industrial ice is not used to cool the liquid," Ghosh added.

The KMC is also conducting drives to stop selling of cut fruits in the city. Though the civic authorities have warned people not to eat cut fruits that are kept in the open, people do not listen to the warning and continue to take them. Drives against coloured drinks, that is, locally made serbats are also being conducted. The bottles containing coloured drinks are sent to the laboratory for tests and non-permissive colours have been used. In such cases, the bottles are destroyed and cases are being initiated against the shop owners.
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