New Delhi: A Delhi-based grocer has been
sentenced to one year rigorous imprisonment by a city court
for selling `arhar dal` adulterated with banned colouring
agent Tartrazine, known to cause brain damage, thyroid cancer
and asthma attacks.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (ACMM)
Raghubir Singh also imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on grocer
Ravi Kumar of Shahadra in northeast Delhi following his
conviction under various provisions of the Prevention of Food
Adulteration Act (PFA).
Singh was found selling the pulse with harmful
colouring agent in November 2004 when a food inspector
purchased the lentil sample from his shop, Ravi General Store.
Following the chemical examination of the sample by
public analyst in Delhi as well as Central Food Laboratory, it
was found laced with Tartrazine.
The court convicted Singh, dismissing his contention
that the chemical was completely water soluble and the pulse
was to be cooked after washing.
"It does not make any sense in saying that Tartrazine
is a water soluble colour. Tartrazine is entirely prohibited
in respect of the `dal` in question.
"The moment the sample was found with unpermitted
colour, the offence was complete and any subsequent
safeguard or guidelines in respect of use of the food article
in question like washing cannot be of any avail for the cause
of the accused," the judge said.