Saturday July 13, 2024

An awareness drive needed

By Ishrat Hyatt
August 27, 2018

The picture you can see has been taken by someone and is doing the rounds on the social media platform. It shows a boy washing apples in a drain of sewage that runs by the spot where he has parked his trolley to do business. These are the apples that will be eaten by many people, sometimes without washing. It’s a fact that many a time customers will take a bite from fruit lying in a shop or on a trolley to taste it before buying!

Hygiene is not a priority with many underprivileged people who live in appalling conditions and have many other issues to deal with, like lack of clean water; living in shacks; no toilet facilities and so on, hence the lack of awareness about how diseases are spread through germs and contact with others who are infected by a disease.

Hospitals are full of people suffering from gastroenteritis, especially children. It is because of these unhygienic practices that people get infected, not only with stomach diseases but other infectious diseases as well. At least there should to be a strong awareness campaign about washing fruit and vegetables in a proper manner, preferably with a few drops of disinfecting medicine like potassium permanganate, which is usually used for disinfecting purposes, since most of the water supply is also contaminated. It is not expensive and a little goes a long way, so it’s affordable by everyone but it needs to be used carefully and should not be ingested.

I hope whoever took the picture told off this lad for putting the health of his customers in danger and explained that it would be better to leave the fruit as is, or shine it with a clean cloth – though this is not a method that will kill germs but he will achieve his object of putting a shine on the apples!