Once upon a time, there used to be deputy commissioners who used to hold periodical conferences to review implementation of provincial governors’ orders. These orders included monitoring campaigns against food adulteration, sale of sub-standard ice creams by street vendors, besides pye-dog killing. The DCs used to ensure that all food inspectors, whether regular or ex officio (like chief officers of municipal bodies, tehsildars, so on) took sample of food products. Even flourmill owners were not spared. Flour sacks en route to villages were intercepted and samples taken.

Now with the governor being reduced to a ceremonial post, no one bothers about food adulteration and other hazards to common man’s life.

A cursory look at bakery items like biscuits, buns, and cakes reveals that they are all sub-standard. A rule of thumb is that unless a food product is well baked it is unlikely to fulfil moisture-content requirement. The whitish look of food products is telltale. Key products do not mention ingredients, flavors and preservatives used. Take Coca Cola. The bottle mentions `registered’, instead of ingredients.

Obviously something is amiss with our administrative system. Pending reform, campaign should be started for food and environmental safety.


Rawalpindi, September 5.