Staff for Food Labs: HC directs presence of officials to explain non-compliance

Staff for Food Labs: HC directs presence of officials to explain non-compliance
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Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Wednesday sought personal appearance of Commissioner Secretary Health, Commissioner Secretary ARI trainings Department and Food Safety Commissioner before the court for failing to comply with court directions passed on September 19.
The court directed for official presence on account of failing to inform court the position regarding the various posts which have been created for manning food laboratories as well as mobile vans.
Taking up the PIL related to Food Adulteration, the Division Bench of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Sanjeev Kumar remarked that officers have to be present before court to answer why compliance report has not been filed and what is it which lets them to defy court orders.
On September 19 last year, court had asked respondents to file the status of recruitment with respect to manning of food laboratories as well as mobile testing food vans.
Court was informed by the respondents that a sum of over Rs. 18 crores has been spent in creating state of art public laboratories in Srinagar and Jammu. However, the personnel are not available. Only some of the posts have been filled, whereas, most important posts which includes those of lab technicians; instrumentation technicians for these laboratories remained vacant.
The court was also informed that seven Mobile Food Testing Vans stand acquired from the State of Gujarat after expenditure of crores of rupees. These vans also remain unutilized as, other than drivers, no technicians are available to man or utilize these vans for any purpose.
The court had noted that if recruitment process has to be effected, the respondents shall disclose the timelines within which the same would be completed.
“We make it clear that in case the process of recruitment for any post is yet to commence, the respondents shall ensure that the necessary action towards issuance of the advertisement inviting applications is positively completed within three weeks from today. The process of selection shall be positively completed within a period of four months from the date of issuance of the advertisement,” the division bench had directed in the September order.