ISLAMABAD - Islamabad Capital Territory administration launched a crackdown against food outlets in the city violating hygiene standards.

According to officials, the campaign is part of the administration’s efforts aimed at provision of standard food to the residents especially in the month of Ramazan. In this connection, Assistant Commissioner Saddar Dr Waqar Ali Khan along with Deputy Director Food Iqbal Yousaf, on receipt of complaints from the PMDU, inspected various outlets in sector F-11. These outlets included Essa Jee store, Cheezilicious, Pizza Originale and Chayay Khana. The inspection team found various deficiencies as under-paid and unvaccinated workers, unhygienic conditions besides recovery of expired items. The Food Department took food samples and sent them to National Institute of Health for tests. The team also imposed a total fine of Rs60,000 on the food outlets. Furthermore, the ICT Food Department inspected various food outlets at Sabzi Mandi in sector I-11/4 Islamabad. Officials of the department found 61 bags full of adulterated food items from Umer traders and Syed traders. Both the shops were sealed and samples sent to laboratory for analysis. Further legal action will be taken after receiving the reports, according to the officials.

The Food Department also raided food factories in Tarnol area on an information received through a complaint. It sealed two factories including KK Foods and Wali Foods for unhygienic conditions and for selling material which was unfit for eating, according to the officials. With Ramadan just a few days away, shopkeepers hike prices of essential food items. On the other hand, the month would witness a lot of adulteration in eatables due to which most people suffer from several diseases.

Most of the food outlets fail to observe hygiene, especially in the holy month of Ramadan. Under the circumstances, according to the officials, the ICT administration has started campaign against such violations in the city. Hotels and bakery owners have been directed to ensure quality of food otherwise stern action would be taken against them. Chief Commissioner, Islamabad has directed the food and health departments of ICT to continue the ongoing drive against adulterated food and non-observance of hygiene, said the officials.