Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued
notices to agencies engaged in milk distribution in
Maharashtra as also the state and the central government
asking for their responses in connection with a public
interest litigation seeking action against large scale
adulteration of milk.
The PIL filed by homoeopath Sreedevi Mehta has sought
direction from the court to the government to set up an agency
to certify milk with a `Milk Mark` which would ensure quality
and a 24-hour helpline for complaints.
A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and
Justice Roshan Dalvi issued notices to the Maharashtra
Government, Union Health Ministry, Maharashtra Dairy
Federation and Maharashtra Milk Distributors` Association and
posted the matter for hearing on February 16.
The petitioners said that they became aware after
reading news reports about mass adulteration of milk consumed
by almost every household in Mumbai. They said that they were
also "shocked and aghast", to learn that the National Milk
Survey found nearly 70 per cent of 1,791 samples picked up
from 33 states and union territories failing to conform to
Food and Safety Standards Authority of India.
"It is a very sorry state of affairs where unknowingly
people are consuming urea, detergents, bad sugar, harmful
chemicals and several other contaminants by drinking
adulterated milk every day," the petition stated.
The petitioner urged that like AGMARK, which is a
quality certification for agricultural products, milk must
also be certified by a `Milk Mark`, certified by an authority
at the state-level.
They also urged for a 24-hour helpline for people to
register complaints so that raids, if necessary, are conducted
and the guilty booked.