Crack down on illegal water packaging units, DC tells health dept

Jan 18, 2018

Mysuru: Concerned over the prevalence of operations of illegal drinking water packaging plants in the district, the health department has appealed to the public to provide information concerning these units through WhatsApp.
The department has undertaken the initiative following deputy commissioner D Randeep directed officials to include the public in clamping down on these plants. Citizens have been requested to send photographs and details of illegal units on WhatsApp.

At a meeting with the DC on Wednesday, district health department’s programme officer Dr Chidambar pointed out that packaged drinking water units ought to be ISI certified. “However, many units are still operating illegally. While there are 10 ISIS-certified units within MCC limits, there are 21 units across the district. We shut down 18 illegal units across the district. There are two units near the Outer Ring Road, where we found cans that were filled with tap water, and sold to the public. Majority of these illegal units operate at night. There are several instances of officers visiting these plants being resisted by the workers,” said Dr Chidambar.

Chidambar also expressed concerns that distributors were reusing 20-litre 2qter cans with ISI mark and selling them to the public. “Initially, these distributors purchase water cans from ISI-certified units, but they refill them with tap water and sell them. They have a machine that removes the sealed cap containing an ISI mark, without damaging the seal. The caps are closed once the cans are filled with tap water,” he added.

Nodal officer for the health department Dr Kusuma said that distributors had been warned of stringent action if they sold water packaged illegally.

Making it clear that there ought to be no secondary water distribution units, Randeep said, “All such units, along with their machinery, must be seized.” The DC told officials of the health department to enlist the assistance of police and tahsildars to raid these illegal units.

Directing officers to compile information over the next 10 days before carrying out the raids, Randeep said, “Officials must also carry out surprise raids on ISI-certified units to check whether or not they are abiding by the rules and regulations.”

On gleaning information about illegal drinking water packaging units operating in the district, public can share details about them through WhaatsApp. Contact: 9449843265 to WhatsApp information or call: 2438144. Publi can also contact Dr Chidambar (9686678041) and Dr Kusmua (9449843265).

Dr Chidambar said that they had carried out random testson 25 samples of milk from KMF, and detected sugar in one of them. “There is still some confusion over whether this should be considered unsafe or substandard, and so, the report has been sent to FSSAI for clarification,” he said.

On reports of substandard khova bought in Erode in Tamil Nadu being sold in the district, Chidambar said that samples of the delicacy had been sent to FSSAI as well.