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PIL claims FSSAI and not MCDs should issue license to meat shops: HC seeks Delhi govt's reply

PTI     April 8, 2019

New Delhi, Apr 8 (PTI) The Delhi High Court Monday sought a response of the AAP government on a plea alleging that the municipal bodies were still granting licenses for setting up slaughter houses in the city when the power to do so is vested in the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). Apart from the Delhi government, a bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice A J Bhambhani also issued notice to the municipal bodies in the city and the FSSAI seeking their stand on the plea. The petition by Gauri Maulekhi, an animal rights activist, has contended that after the FSSAI rules came into effect in August 2011, the food safety authority was the sole competent body to regulate and grant registration or license to slaughter houses and meat shops. However, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi in September 2011 issued a revised meat shop policy under which it continued to grant registration and licenses to the meat shops and slaughter houses, senior advocate Raj Panjwani, appearing for Maulekhi, told the court. In the petition, filed through advocate Priyanka Bangari, the animal rights activist has contended that the FSSAI Regulations "specifically regulates and lays down the specific hygienic and sanitary practices to be followed by the food business operators engaged in manufacture, processing, storing and selling of meat and meat products, to obtain the said license to operate". "Therefore, slaughter houses, meat shops, processing units such as cold storage of meat, etc. are bound by law to obtain license under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 from the FSSAI," the petition has said. It has also said despite the Director (Regulatory Compliance) FSSAI writing to the Delhi government in June last year to direct the municipal corporation to withdraw the September 2011 licensing policy, nothing has been done till date. PTI HMP SKV KJ

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