LAHORE The business of spurious and substandard cold drinks is on the rise in the City under the nose of Provincial Food Department and the Food Department of City District Government, as almost 10,000 unregistered factories are preparing and selling substandard cold drinks, the insiders of Food Department informed TheNation. Manufacturers of these cold drinks are not only violating the food laws but also spreading various diseases like hepatitis, diarrhea, tuberculosis (TB) and a number of other diseases among the citizens due to unhealthy nutrition affects of such cold drinks, they further informed. They alleged that the distributors of a number of branded and multinational companies were also involved in this illegal business and were playing havoc with the lives of innocent people only for the sake of money. They said that the government departments completely failed to control such illegal manufacturing despite the laws clearly declare such practice of making unhealthy drinks a crime against humanity. Perhaps, the manufacturers were influential or bribing the authorities concerned and their subordinate staffers for ignoring their illegal business or factories while conducting routine raids especially during campaign against substandard cold drinks. They further alleged that the official usually play the role of informers for the manufacturers, distributors, suppliers and dealers of different companies and used to inform them before conducting raids. In case of any complaint from the citizens against such factories of cold drinks, the officials used to conduct raid on these factories including of those having 'dealing or 'understanding with them and ask them to close down their business for the time being and later they ask them to restart their business, the insiders maintained adding that in fact the officials were promoting the business of spurious and substandard beverages and cold drinks indirectly by protecting these criminals under law. The insiders further informed that the officials of the Food Department of CDG confiscated a luxury truck (RPT-3828) loaded with over one lac beverages and bottles of spurious drinks from Sherakot a couple of days ago, which was bound for Mansehra. The officials according to laws got sample of the drinks and keep the truck in their custody for three days while giving impression that according to the laboratory report, the drinks were substandard. But suddenly, they released the truck with bottles and reported that the drinks were according to the standard of food laws, which not only wondered the insiders but also surprised the officials of other departments, they added. The District Officer (Food) Dr Masood Ashraf was not available when this scribe tried to know his version.