Govt officials off to Jajarkot

KATHMANDU: Amidst reports that the quality of food distributed under UN World Food Programme in Jajarkot district was unfit for human consumption, Department of Food Technology and Quality Control today sent a team of food inspectors to the diarrhoea-hit district of Jajarkot to collect the sample of food to carry out investigation.

Earlier, the food sample claimed to be distributed by WFP was found to be substandard following laboratory tests at DFTQC. The lab test had said that the foodstuff was unfit even for bird and animal consumption. The sample was provided to DFTQC by Consumer Rights Protection Forum via INSEC.

"Following the controversial claim over the quality of the food, DFTQC sent the team to Jajarkot to collect the genuine samples of rice distributed to the starved people," informed Pramod Koirala, senior food researcher, DFTQC. He said that it would be more authentic if the food inspector reached there to collect the sample in person.

"We'll conduct further lab test to unearth the ground reality," he said. Some organisations have claimed the decayed rice distributed by WFP was the main reason behind the spread of the deadly diarrhoea in Far and Mid-Western districts. WFP, however, has refuted the allegation challenging those to verify their claims.

Meanwhile, Development Project Service Centre, Nepal said that it was deeply concerned by the claim that WFP halted distribution of foodstuff in Jajarkot. Issuing a press release today, programme officer of the organisation, Kushum Kishor Bhatta, said, "The report is baseless. It will serve no purpose to combat the diarrhoea epidemic."