HC summons BFSA chief over substandard food

The High Court on Thursday summoned the chairman of Bangladesh Food Safety Authority (BFSA) for failing to withdraw 52 substandard products from markets. The court ordered him to appear before it on June 16 and issued a rule asking him to explain why punishment should not be served for noncompliance with the directive.

The court also issued a rule asking the food safety authority why a legal action should not be taken against them over their disregard for the withdrawal order.
The bench of Justice Sheikh Hassan Arif and Justice Razik-Al Jalil issued the summons and rule while hearing a writ petition seeking order to withdraw the substandard items.

On May 12, the court prohibited the sales of 52 products and ordered the authorities to remove them from markets following a report by the Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution which was published by the commerce ministry. The court also barred the production of the impugned items until the BSTI standards are met.

The HC on May 12 directed the government to immediately remove from the market the 52 food items that have been found substandard by Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution. On that day, the BFSA and the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection were asked to take necessary measures to this effect and submit a report to it in 10 days.

Following the order, the lawyer of the food safety authority submitted a report to the court on Thursday. The court expressed its anger as the authorities failed to make any progress in implementing the order issued by the High Court. The BFSA chairman was asked to appear in court on Jun 16. BSTI identified 18 substandard food products of 52 brands. BSTI released the list of the products on May 3 after testing consumer products ahead of Ramadan.

The BSTI list of substandard products include: MUSTARD OIL Teer of City Oil, Rupchanda of Bangladesh Edible Oil, Pusti of Shabnam Vegetable Oil, GB of Green Blessings Oil. SALT WITH ADULTERATED IODINE ACI, Molla, Madhumati, Dada Super, Tin Teer, Madina, Starship, Taz, Noor. NOODLES Doodley of New Zealand Dairy. Sun of Quasem Food Products is also included in the list. LACHCHHA SEMAI Mishtimela, Madhuban, Mithai, Wellfood, Baghabarhi Special, Pran, Jeddah, Kiron, Amrita.