Using harmful chemicals to ripen fruits
Traders to be tried under SPA: HCBdnews24.com . Dhaka
The High Court has ordered authorities concerned to prosecute unscrupulous traders, who use harmful chemicals to ripen fruits, under the Special Powers Act, 1974.
The bench of justices AHM Chowdhury and Jahangir Hossain passed the order on Wednesday after the final hearing on a writ petition filed by Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh, a rights organisation.
The court also issued a set of directives to the authorities to stop use of harmful chemicals for ripening and preserving fruits, and sale of such fruits.
Counsel of the petitioner Manzill Murshed told the news agency that the act provided for up to life-term rigorous imprisonment to its violators.
On May 10, 2010, the High Court passed similar directives following a writ petition filed by HRPB.
In the Wednesday’s verdict, the court directed the National Board of Revenue and the customs authorities to continuously monitor the imported fruits at all points.
Besides, the NBR and the customs authorities have been directed to watch the fruit depots and markets across the country, so that contaminated fruits are not stored or sold.
The commerce secretary, home secretary, food secretary, inspector general of police, Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution managing director and the Rapid Action Battalion director general have been directed to implement the directives.
Experts say multiple health complexities,
in the kidney, heart and liver, can develop and
diseases like ulcer and gastric can be caused from eating fruits ripened by carbide, ethephon or ethylene oxide.
During the summer season, the markets
are flooded with various fruits, including mangoes, jackfruits, litchis,
pineapples, watermelons, papayas and bananas,
many of which are artificially ripened with toxic chemicals.
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