Hyderabad: Telangana and AP State Food Laboratory of Institute of Preventive Medicine that tests the food samples for adulteration, is in the dock with its officials being charged with corruption. GHMC food inspectors have also been found to be part of the racket.
The TS Anti-Corruption Bureau sleuths conducted surprise checks and caught SFL chief public analyst N. Ravindra and four other food inspectors accepting a bribe of Rs 1.25 lakh and urging Pune Lab (a referral lab) to change their report of adulteration in a chicken biryani sample taken from Haveli Bar and Restaurant in Begumpet.
According to ACB director-general J. Purnachandra Rao, the agency received a tip-off that money would be exchanging hands between food control officials of GHMC and the officials of SFL for the manipulation of food analysis reports.
“On Saturday we conducted a surprise check at SFL and arrested five officials,” he said. The arrested were identified as GHMC assistant food controller K. Balaji Raju, Chief Public Analyst of directorate of IPM N. Ravindra, owner of Haveli Bar and Restaurant of Begumpet K.V.Narsinga Rao, accountant in Haveli bar and Restaurant in Begumpet K Srinivas and a record assistant in the GHMC Food Controller’s office A Jagan .
SFL at Nacharam is headed by N Ravindra as Chief Public Analyst for both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The lab tests all kinds of food samples including cereals, cereal products, oil and fats, milk and milk products, spices and condiments, beverages and other miscellaneous food products like salt, turmeric and red chilli powder.
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