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  Metros   Mumbai  09 May 2017  92 per cent E-coli found in ice, but BMC’s hands are tied

92 per cent E-coli found in ice, but BMC’s hands are tied

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : May 9, 2017, 2:52 am IST
Updated : May 9, 2017, 2:52 am IST

This is because ice-making factories are located in Navi Mumbai that lie outside the jurisdiction of the BMC.

The ice samples were collected from 552 shops and 2,995 street vendors. (Photo: Mrughesh Bandiwadekar)
 The ice samples were collected from 552 shops and 2,995 street vendors. (Photo: Mrughesh Bandiwadekar)

Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) took samples of ice and water from all 24 civic wards in the city and tested them. While tests revealed that the presence of dreaded E-coli bacteria is around 92 per cent in ice samples before the monsoon, the civic body is unable to take action against the same. This is because ice-making factories are located in Navi Mumbai that lie outside the jurisdiction of the BMC.

Sources said the civic body has requested the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in writing to take action against them.

The samples were collected from ice-sellers, hotels, restaurants, bars, juice stalls, dairies, sweetmeat shops, ice-gola vendors, fast food outlets, lassi sellers and hand-cart used for selling colourful juices. The presence of the E-coli bacteria indicates that inferior or impure quality water is being used to make ice-cubes. It can lead to gastroenteritis, diarrhoea, vomiting, food poisoning and other illnesses.

A civic official said, “In the city, we usually get ice from Navi Mumbai. The BMC water is unadulterated. However, hawkers bring ice from the areas that are outside the BMC’s jurisdiction. Also, they are unable to maintain the standards of hygiene, since water gets easily contaminated.”

Dr Om Shrivastava, a health expert, said, “E-coli bacteria are found in food as well as liquids, there are many types of E-coli bacteria. But some can cause diarrhoea, severe anaemia or kidney failure which can be fatal.”

“If one has fever, severe body ache, diarrhoea, or is vomiting, he or she should not neglect such symptoms. They must seek medical assistance,” he added.    

The test showed that the water and ice cubes collected from M-East, F-North, G-North, K-East, R-South, N and T wards, were containing more that 92 per cent E-coli bacteria.

The ice samples were collected from 552 shops and 2,995 street vendors.

The tests were conducted on 1.12 tonnes of sweetmeats, 4.56 tonnes of all types of eatables, 4.81 tonnes of all types of colourful juices, water or drinks and 3.90 tonnes fruits-and vegetables.

Dr Padmaja Keskar, civic executive health officer, said, “The ice-cubes used in soft drinks, sherbets, fruit or milk shakes are dangerous. Especially the products which are sold in the open contain E-coli bacteria.”

“The consumptions of these liquids can lead to various health ailments such as gastroenteritis, diarrhoea, vomiting, food poisoning and other illnesses,” she added.

Tags: bmc, fda, e-coli bacteria
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)