Srinagar: A court in Budgam on Monday stayed a judgment imposing Rs 9 lakhs as penalty on a dairy company—M/s Khyber Agro Farms Pvt Ltd, Lethpora Pampore — and sentenced its nominee to six months in prison following a report by Kolkata based laboratory regarding its tonned milk sample lifted in the central Kashmir district in July 2013.
The Principal Sessions Judge Budgam Mohammad Yousuf Wani stayed the judgment passed by the court of judicial magistrate Budgam Imtiaz Ahmad Lone last week.
It also granted bail to company’s nominated person Mohammad Shafi Ganie of Larson Ganderbal subject to furnishing of bail and personal bonds to the tune of Rs 50000 each.
The court also imposed a rider, directing Ganie to be punctual at the proceedings of the main appeal.
In another direction, court directed the Food Safety Commissioner that he and other competent authorities under the Food Safety and Standard Act and the rules were at liberty to take appropriate action under the Act, if the results of the analysis of the samples so warrant.
“This order shall not also be construed as a halt on the powers of commissioner of food safety of the state or his other subordinate competent officers to initiate disciplinary action against any of its officers or officials in the backdrop of the impugned judgment, if they so desire as the said power already vests with them under service laws in-vogue”, the principal district and sessions judge added.
Last week, the sub-judge had imposed a penalty of Rs 5 lakh on the company for sub-standard food, Rs 3 lakh for mis-branded item and Rs 1 lakh for unsafe food. The court had passed the judgment on a complaint filed on 17 July 2013 by food safety officer (FSO) Zeenat Ayoub.
The FSO had filed the complaint after receiving test report from Referral Laboratory in Kolkata about the samples of tonned milk taken during the surprise checking in central Kashmir district.
The analyst report from the Kolkata laboratory had revealed that the sample does not conform to the standard under FSSA regulations 2011.