Make food quality checks mandatory for Street Food as it causes life threateing diseases
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Multiple studies show that 'Street Food' in India, especially Delhi , is contaminated and is highly infected with bacteria , which can cause life threatening infections or diseases.
My brother, 20 years, is in ICU for the past 2 months as he has been diagnosed with Pancreatitis, a disease in which pancreas become inflamed. This disease is mainly caused due to wrong food habits and alcohol consumption.This disease has become common in young people, because of their worsening food habits and increased consumption of alcohol and cigarette. I have myself seen 3 more patients of the same disease in the age bracket of 20 - 30 years, who are being treated in the same hospital as my brother.
Pancreatitis is a silent killer. Many people are ignorant of this disease and many even do not know that the disease exists until they are diagnosed with it.But the reality is that it is killing many young people.
Once pancreas are affected, they affect the other organs as well causing damage to kidneys, lungs,etc.
My brother has reached this stage of disease mainly because of the consumption of street food which is excessively contaminated in India.
Street vendors are not at all concerned about the quality of food they sell. Providing food with less investment and more profit is the first preference of vendors.
The bacterial pathogens commonly found in street eateries cause pancreatitis, vomiting , abdominal cramps and diarrhea, appetite loss, fever, typhoid, food poisoning, irritation and inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract.
This may not sound serious while reading, but the actual depth is realized by those who are suffering from this, like my family.
Just imagine why would somebody provide you such cheap food? Just because he has used unfiltered water containing thousands of bacteria, his food has not gone through any checks, he uses the cheapest available ingredients which are usually discarded by people, cooked in poor environmental conditions with no attention given to hygiene or sanitation at all.
It is claimed that several initiatives have been taken by Government of India and FSSAI( Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) in this regard. Swachh Bharat Swachh Pakwan Project of Ministry of Tourism , Project- Clean Street Food by FSSAI, etc.
But why are no statistics available for these initiatives? Why are none of these followed by street vendors in our areas? Why do we daily hear people suffering from food poisoning? This is because once these initiatives are taken, nobody supervises them.
Why are all the authorities negligent in India? I request the concerned authorities to take required steps.There should be proper regulation of the quantity as well as quality of Street Food.
Some steps that are necessary to be taken given the alarming rate of consumption of street food by Indians:
1. There should be minimum quality requirements/ standards for the food sold on streets as well. No vendor should be allowed to sell food without meeting those quality standards of food.
2. Proper licenses should be issued to Street Vendors as well. Nobody without a licence or registration should be allowed on streets.
3. Regular quality checks of food sold on streets by the authorities.
4. Sub-authorities at various places to deal with the local problems of people and street vendors.
5. Training and skill development of street vendors
6. Awareness among general public to be cautious while consuming any kind of food.
We know that various initiatives have already been taken on the same lines, but then why do we see no development or improvement in our area?
As a concerned citizen of India, I highly demand that the government and the concerned authorities to take the required steps and implement these initiatives with full force and most importantly, monitor them to see the impact and success of these initiatives.
We have suffered but we do not want others to suffer.
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