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Third-party audit of railway catering service soon: Minister

Flooded with constant complaints over the quality of food being served on trains, the railway ministry has decided to introduce third-party audit of the catering service. Focused on improving the quality and hygiene of catering services, third-party audit of catering services will be conducted at periodic intervals by independent and reputed auditing agencies accredited by NABCB (National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies) as empanelled by the Zonal Railways, informed minister of state for railways Manoj Sinha in Parliament on Friday.

The parameters for audit include all aspects of catering services like personal hygiene, infrastructure facilities, cleaning and sanitation, food safety, storage facilities, implementation of regulatory, statutory and safety regulations, quality of presentation etc, said the minister in a written note in Rajya Sabha.

He went on to say that all zonal railways have a detailed institutionalized mechanism for monitoring of quality and hygiene of catering services through regular, surprise and periodical inspections. If any deficiency is found, corrective actions are taken including penal actions like imposition of fines, termination of contract according to the gravity of the offence.
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