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No food vendor registered with UT health department

28,November, 2018

CHANDIGARH: If there is typhoid or any food-borne disease on an epidemic scale, then there is no way for the health department in the city to catch the culprits as none of the food vendors are registered with the food safety and standards department in the UT health department. The reason being the municipal corporation here does not give specific address of food vendors that makes it difficult for the health department to locate the defaulters.

Chandigarh has around 9,000 registered street vendors and the MC has been receiving a monthly fee of Rs 40 to Rs 50 lakh. “The street food vendors have slips issued by the MC, which mentions the fee they pay and the sector with regard to their location. But their exact position is not mentioned on it. We have taken this up with our department so that the same can be followed up by the MC,” said an official in the UT health department.

The official said that, “In case there is any complaint of food-borne disease or infection, how can we locate those vendors who are still not registered with us due to this incomplete information.”

On the contrary, the MC officials believe that it’s not the responsibility of their department and it solely lies with the health department. “According to the street vendor act, we are not supposed to specify any business or trade to the vendors. It is with the respective departments to decide and regulate it,” said K K Yadav, MC commissioner, Chandigarh. He said that, “In case the health department requires details of these vendors, the same can be provided any time.”

A health official on the condition of anonymity explained that they often get calls from consumers about contaminated food. But it gets tough to act as there are so many vendors who come with slips issued by the MC, which has licence fee and name of the sector mentioned only. “We want to regulate the food standards and for that all these vendors have to be registered with us too. But with this incomplete information from the MC, we cannot register and keep vigilance on the food quality,” said a senior official in the health department.

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