A mid-day meal being served at an Anganwadi centre in the state, under the scheme run by the women and child development ministry.
Father of six-year-old who got the packet of semolina alerts workers and Washim’s gram panchayat; FDA to conduct surprise raids across state to collect WCD scheme samples
A dead frog in a packet of semolina distributed at an Anganwadi centre in Washim district has prompted the Maharashtra Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to conduct surprise raids across all Anganwadi centres in the state. FDA officials will now collect selective samples to keep an eye on food that children are consuming under the women and child development (WCD) scheme.
The dead frog was spotted on Monday. Dr Harshadeep Kamble, commissioner of the state FDA, told Mirror, “The incident is an eye-opener and we will notify all our district Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) officials to be vigilant and even collect samples of food packets that are distributed in Anganwadi centres under the scheme run by the WCD ministry. This will include raids as well as collection of selective samples. It will be a task to depute many officials for this investigation, but we will seek help and coordination from the state health department for this.”
A source from the health department, who did not wish to be named, shared, “The incident took place on Monday, where a frog was spotted in the semolina packet. The father of the six-year-old child who got the packet immediately brought this to the notice of the Anganwadi workers as well as the gram panchayat. Washim’s health officer has been directed to look into the matter. But, it is primarily the responsibility of the WCD department. Such cases can lead to food poisoning in children. A bid for nutrition cannot cost children their health. Thus, the FDA’s timely action is crucial.”
When Mirror contacted minister of state for women and child development Vidya Thakur, she assured, “The incident needs to be inquired thoroughly. The FDA’s help is appreciated. But, the officials will be asked to investigate the matter and will be sent to Washim. We will have to look into all the details.”
█ The incident is an eye-opener. We will notify all our district FSSAI officials to be vigilant. This will include raids.