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Meghalaya Government imposes Ban on fish import

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Shillong: From Monday, the Meghalaya government banned the import of fish for fifteen days and warned of imprisonment up to 7 years and fine up to rupees ten lakhs, under Section 59 (iv) of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, in case of non-compliance. The ban follows fish samples, which are sent to an Assam laboratory, testing positive for formalin. A notification issued by the commissioner of food safety, P.W. Ingty stated that the report of the food analyst to the government, dated July 20, shows that two of the 19 samples sent tested positive for formalin, a highly toxic preservative, which are injurious to health. The Meghalaya government is also carrying out spot tests on imported fish to the markets across the state with formalin (formaldehyde) detection kits, spot-testing kits that it has procured. Other perishables items like fruits, vegetables, and meat products are also being spot tested for harmful preservatives. Sources said that a spot test of fish samples was conducted at Nongpoh in Ri Bhoi district on Monday, showed the presence of formalin.