Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Food vendors on Kozhikode beach come under scanner: The Times of India

KOZHIKODE: After conducting a cleaning drive at the beach on the Gandhi Jayanthi with participation from the public, district administration is exploring ways to keep the cleanliness of the area intact.
A large number of students and volunteers of various organizations had taken part in the cleaning drive. Similar attempts were made in the past too, but beach remained dirty after a few days of cleaning.
District administration has sought the opinion of the experts on maintaining the cleanliness of the beach because more sustained efforts are needed to keep the beach beautiful. "Unlike other places in the city, beach needs scientific ways to keep it clean," district collector N Prasanth said.
A major concern for the people who throng the beach on holidays is the quality of the food served at the make-shift eateries that have sprouted along the beach. During the cleaning drive on October 2, officials have come across many eateries that sell unhygienic food sold at these shops. Food safety authorities have banned the sale of crushed ice sold on the beach as it is found out that these items are made in unhygienic conditions and have added chemicals.
Shockingly, many of the food items sold at the beach were preserved for weeks. Officials have asked the vendors to remove the ice boxes immediately and install new refrigerators. The fruits and vegetables found the ice boxes have been destroyed by the squad. The vendors have been asked to keep the outlets clean. The search was conducted by the officials following a direction from the collector.
Food safety officials said that awareness classes were conducted for the street vendors at the beach. Many have been paying scant regard to the directions issued from to time. Officials have warned that strict action will be initiated against offenders and regular raids will be conducted at the eateries on the beach. The collector has also asked the city corporation authorities to take steps to issue license to the vendors on the beach. As there is no licensing system it is very difficult for the authorities to find out the culprit in case of health hazards.
District collector N Prasanth told TOI that students of the IIM-K have been asked to prepare a project report on the sustainable model of the beach cleaning. "The idea is to divide the beach into different segments and entrust each area to some sponsor, which would be a corporate or an institution," said the collector.
Author: The Times of India

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