In spite of numerous safety and hygiene requirements and widely publicised raids by the city authorities and the Food Safety Department, unsafe and stale food is still being supplied by restaurants throughout Kerala.
After having kuzhimanthi and al-faham, two well-known Arabian meals, from a restaurant on the outskirts of Kottayam town, a young nurse died on Monday. This tragedy occurs shortly after the State was hit by a wave of serious food poisoning cases, many of which were linked to shawarma.
Reshmi Raj, a nurse, consumed food from the same hotel that was given a closure notice two months prior after being discovered to be operating in an unclean manner during a raid by the Kottayam Municipality’s health department.
The actions of the authorities regarding food safety are under harsh criticism because numerous other people have also reported getting food illness after consuming food from the hotel. Many sources have claimed that the inspections taking place everywhere are being done for the sake of the name. They demanded an investigation into how the hotel began operating without following safety procedures.
Even though it was requested at the town council meeting, the authorities failed to conduct any meaningful inspections at hotel and restaurant chains throughout the Christmas-New Year holiday season.
On December 29, Reshmi Raj (33), a worker at the Kottayam Government Medical College Hospital, ate dinner at the ‘Park’ Hotel in Sankranthi. An hour after eating the popular dishes “kuzhimanthi” and “alfaham,” she began throwing up and experiencing loose motion.
Despite the greatest efforts of the medical staff, she passed away three days after being admitted to Kottayam Medical College in a critical condition. She passed away as a result of an infection in her internal organs, according to medical officials.
Jiju, an Athirampuzha local, claimed to have experienced food poisoning after ordering food from Park hotel online on December 29 together with his wife and two children.
Although he didn’t have many health problems, Jiju, who is recovering at a private hospital, claimed his wife and kids haven’t totally recovered. Similar to this, Nebu Cherian and Shijo Mon, both from Punnakuzhi, Aarppukkara, were admitted to the hospital after consuming food from the hotel. After his daughter was released from the hospital after receiving fever-related therapy, he claimed to have purchased kuzhimanthi and al-faham from the hotel on the way home. However, his daughter and wife refused to eat at that time.
Anyone who suspects a case of food poisoning may file a report with the Food Safety Department or the local police station. Upon receiving a complaint in this regard, local self-regulatory organisations’ health wings will also undertake a raid. Before deciding on the next course of action, these authorities will gather food samples during the hotel raids and assess the quality of the samples.
However, if a person who has food poisoning is hospitalised, the hospital administration will also report the event to the Food Safety Department and the police.
When the hotel operators are found guilty, the department will often propose the licence suspension, according to Food Safety Assistant Commissioner C R Randeep.