As the festival approaches the movement of adulterated MAVA (also known as KHAVA) major ingredient used in preparation of MITHAI (sweets) increases. Mava normally comes from outside the state and now since the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi is approaching, sweet makers have started ordering their stocks of Mava. Every year FDA authorities confiscate hundreds of Kgs of Mawa either from railways stations or bus stands in Goa which normally comes to Goa from neighboring states such as Belgavi, Kolhapur or Miraj.
According to the available information after receiving the tip the four member team of FDA (Food and Drugs Administration) swung into the action and seized around 340 KG of unlabeled Mawa at Margao Railway Station. It was apparently coming from Miraj. The FDA team involved in the raid comprises of FDA Inspector Korde and food safety officers Flavia D’Costa, Richard Naronha and Madhav Kawalekar. The mawa was arrived at Margao station by the Goa Express Train from Miraj. “The mawa was being transported without any refrigeration facility,” said Salim A. Veljee, Director of FDA, Goa.
He further added that He added, “On August 31, I had written to the South Central Railways as well as the Konkan Railways not to bring food items such as meat and milk-based products which require to be refrigerated at a controlled temperature as the railways do not have any cold storage facilities like an ice-box. Despite writing to them, they still continue to transport food articles which need to be refrigerated. I have also written to the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, New Delhi, to take up this issue with the railways ministry.”
The estimated value of the seized Mava is approximately 55,000 and that too in adulterated condition without any proper refrigeration system. According to the food safety norms the perishable products as Milk and Milk products cannot be carried in train or bus which does not have proper refrigeration system for these types of products. Despite of the laid down guideline the adulterated Mava transported in the train without any documentation. The Mava was supposed to be used in the preparation of various types of sweets for the upcoming Ganesh festival. “We received information that adulterated mava and curd had come through trains. We found eight red coloured boxes and cans of mava and curd in adulterated condition. Action will be taken against the offenders,” said Korde.
Korde said that the FDA had written to railway officials to avoid accepting meat and mava consignments in unhealthy and unhygienic conditions. “We had written to the Konkan railway and south central railways in the past not to accept consignments of meat and mava,” he said. The raid was conducted in the presence of police inspector of Margao railway police Santosh Desai and other police officials. Interestingly, the party, which was to receive the consignments, did not turn up as usual. The PRO Baban Ghatge said that the through checking needed to be done at the consignment loading points and not at the delivery points “We had also written to the authorities (south central and central railways) about it in the past,” he informed.
This is not the first time Mava has been seized under such conditions, in fact is the usual practice of the consignees to not to turn up when the such consignments get caught by the FDA. The reason behind their alertness is not yet known. There could be the possibility that they wait in silence around to make sure that everything is OK or they get tipped by someone inside the system beforehand. Whatever may be the reason but one thing is sure that every time they did not get caught increases the chances of one of you eating the “Mithai” in adulterated condition which can result into serious health problems. Think over this and please make sure that this festival you buy your sweets only from the trusted sources in Goa to make sure that what you and your loved ones consume is pure for sure. Please do not forget to leave your valuable comments and suggestions on this serious issue.
Edited by: Goa Prism News Desk