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January 7, 2015

No check on sale of unhygienic meat


January 7, 2015

The authorities concerned have yet to take firm action against butchers who are selling uncovered and unhygienic meat in the city. The city district government, Rawalpindi has completely failed to implement its orders issued in January 19, 2011 in which it directed butchers to cover meat in their shops with a net to keep it safe from flies and dust.
At that time, the City District Government, Rawalpindi, warned that if any butcher was found selling meat without net he would have to face strict legal action. Unfortunately, around 100 per cent butchers selling uncovered and unhygienic meat while concerned authorities are seeing the whole drama with closed eyes.
According to information, ‘The News’ collected from the City District Government, there are around 2,000 meat shops in the city and almost all butchers do not have proper arrangements for covering meat making it unfit for human consumption.
Rawalpindi Division Commissioner Zahid Saeed called numberless meetings of price magistrates and directed them to conduct raids on meat shops to implement the orders, but all these efforts remained ineffective.
Rawal Town Administrator Imran Qureshi told ‘The News’ that butchers could not sell meat without using net. He said that the administration would register FIRs, impose fines and seal shops for violation of the orders. He said that a price magistrate could impose a fine or register an FIR against the violator.
Medical experts said that uncovered meat is dangerous for human health. He said that abdominal diseases are spreading due to consumption of unhygienic things like meat. They also said that hepatitis was spreading among the people due to the consumption of uncovered, unhygienic and wet meat.
Talking to ‘The News’ consumers belong to different walks of life said, “Local administration has fixed the prices of different commodities in the markets, but no solid mechanism to check the quality of meat and its retail

prices has been devised.” They also alleged that most of the butchers pump water into veins of slaughtered animals to increase their weights.
According to reports, residents are suffering from diseases, including blood pressure and hepatitis due to the unhygienic meat being sold to them.
Residents alleged that butchers illegally slaughter animals in their houses or shops instead of slaughtering them in slaughterhouses.
“Already we are living in polluted atmosphere nowadays due to construction work of Metro Bus Project. Butchers added fuel to fire by selling uncovered meat and playing with the lives of public openly,” said Amir Abbasi, a consumer at Banni Chowk.
“Hygiene at butcher shops is very poor but the authorities concerned seem least interested to take action against the violators in accordance with the law,” said Muhammad Amjad, a government servant. He said that the quality of meat at most of the shops was very poor as butchers slaughter unhealthy animals.
Noman Ahmed, another consumer, said that most of the butcher shops are located at main roads and meat sold by the butchers gets contaminated with germs because they hang it outside their shops. But concerned authorities are not taking action against responsible people, he said.
The citizens also alleged that butchers bribed the concerned officials to get slaughtered animals approved without any formal inspection.
A senior representative of Rawalpindi Butchers Association Muhammad Shahzad Qureshi said that concerned authorities should take action against butchers who are selling uncovered and unhygienic meat in markets.

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