SHRC demands report on adulterated packaged food
Kochi: The Kerala State Human Rights Commission (KSHRC) has demanded reports from the secretaries of local self-government and health departments as well as the food safety commissioner on issuing licences to adulterated food products. KSHRC chairperson Justice J B Koshy has asked them to submit an explanation before March 10.
The commission sought the report at its sitting in Kochi on Monday on corporation councillor Thampi Subramanian’s complaint that adulterated food products were being sold as branded ones in the open market.
In his petition to the commission, he also demanded that licences be granted only to food products inspected by food safety officials. The commission will hear the case at its sitting on March 23.
Recently, the commission had sought a report from the civil supplies commissioner regarding canteens charging excessive rates for food items in cinema theatres.
Meanwhile, food safety commissioner T V Anupama said, "We give licences to traders based on infrastructure facilities such as buildings and details of food items they sell. We can’t take measures against them for excess rates charged in cinema canteens as the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSSA) does not clearly specify it."
At the sitting, another petitioner wanted private bus owners to revise the rates like Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), which reduced the minimum ordinary fare from Rs 7 to Rs 6. The commission decided to issue notices to the secretary of the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD) and private bus owners regarding the demand.
The commission also heard a petition to prevent toll collection on bridges that have completed the toll period as per contract. According to the petitioner, the toll period of SN Kavala, Kochi Refinery and Chithrapuzha bridges in Tripunithura have been completed. But the government is collecting toll from vehicles taking these bridges.
KSHRC also decided to issue notices to the district collector, principal secretaries of the Public Works Department (PWD) and finance department as well as the division executive engineer regarding the levy of toll on bridges that have completed the term.
The commission also heard a complaint alleging police officials were not given weekly offs as per the law, and decided to send a notice to the home ministry.
A total of 51 cases, including 15 new ones, were heard at the sitting.