Islamabad - The Senate Standing Committee on National Health Services Regulations & Coordination was told on Tuesday that a large quantity of contaminated milk is being supplied to the federal capital while the administration has no mechanism to regulate the substandard edibles being transported in the city.

The meeting of Senate Standing Committee on National Health Services Regulations & Coordination (NHSRC) was held here under the chairmanship of Senator Sajjad Hussain Turi.

The acting District Health Officer (DHO) Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Dr Muhammad Tariq said that above 71,000 litres milk was examined and around 35,000 litres milk was found contaminated.  He informed the Senate body that a huge quantity of milk is being supplied from Sargodha, Rawat and Tarnol while a number of dairy farms situated in the suburbs of the city are also producing ‘detergent mixed’ milk.

The DHO informed the committee that the substandard milk and poultry being supplied in the city is resulting in the disorder of hormones in the children and adults.  The official also said that ICT has fined 208 dairy farms, suppliers and around 1317 lectures were arranged for the production of hygienic milk.

However, the official also said that the administration is ensuring quality supply food in the city with the staff of six officials only.

“There is even no Assistant DHO in the city,” he said.  He said that three different agencies including Capital Development Authority (CDA) and Food Authority under the Commissioner Office are working to ensure the standard of milk and poultry in the city.

“But all of these agencies work separately,” he told the Senate body.

He also informed the committee that a similar situation prevails in the poultry supply, as there is no check on the chickens of specific weight being produced by the farms.

Moreover, he also informed that expired food is being sold at the big grocery stores of the city.  Senator Nouman Wazir Khattak said that ICT has short-term plans of raiding and confiscating the unhygienic food but has no mechanism of uprooting the supply.  Senator Attique Sheikh proposed that a bill must be brought to regulate the supply of unhygienic food inside the federal capital.

The chairman committee recommended calling a meeting on a single-point agenda summoning ICT, CDA, Food Authority, National Institute of Health (NIH) and NARC to form a single platform for regulating the unhygienic food supply in the city.

The Senate body expressed serious concerns on the recordings presented in the meeting in which a member of Private Association of Medical Association (PAMI) and owner of the medical college were allegedly accusing senators of taking the bribe. 

Senator Attique Sheikh said that the committee blocked the way of illegal increase in the fee of private medical colleges and the legislators are being accused of taking the bribe.

The President Pakistan Medical & Dental Council (PMDC) also informed the meeting that he has received life threats for not recognising some private medical colleges.  The chair directed the NHSRC and PMDC officials to take action against the people behind the threats and bribe accusations.

The committee was also informed that PMDC has failed in maintaining the audit record of two private medical colleges and other relevant data when the sub-committee visited the council for the transparency check.

The President PMDC also informed the committee that increase in the fee of private medical colleges has not been implemented, as the point was not included in the agenda of the federal cabinet meeting.  He also said that the legal status of the PMDC body is hanging in balance, as the act has not been passed by the Parliament.