KOLKATA/PATNA: Despite the Centre’s ban on Maggi noodles, West Bengal will not initiate any step to prevent its sale as nothing objectionable was found after testing the noodle samples, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Friday.
“The state government and Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) collected eight samples of Maggi and tested them at five different laboratories. Nothing harmful was found in them. If the tests revealed harmful elements, we would have taken steps. As long as nothing harmful is found, how can we take steps?” Mamata said .
On the Centre’s direction to ban Maggi the TMC chief said, “We feel further investigation is needed as it would be inappropriate for the decision to be taken in haste.”
The West Bengal Chief Minister’s decision has come in for much criticism from the Opposition. “When the company itself has decided to recall the batches being sold and to replace them, it is evident there were harmful elements. Then Chief Minister’s stand against the ban is questionable and suspicious, “ Leader of Opposition Surjyakanta Mishra said.
“The state government seems to be unconcerned and taking a proactive stand,” accused Congress MLA Manoj Chakraborty.
“The test reports should be tabled inside the House as Maggi is consumed by children and young people. People have the right to know whether it is safe to consume it,” he said in the West Bengal Assembly.
Meanwhile, the Bihar Government on Friday banned the ‘2-minute’ noodles for a month, following similar steps by a few other states.
“Maggi will not be sold or displayed in shops and malls during the ban period,” state Food Safety Commissioner Anand Kishore told reporters here.
“Maggi is not manufactured in Bihar, but is brought from states such as Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand for distribution and sale. After the samples collected from both UP and Uttarakhand failed the test, the decision to ban Maggi for a month in Bihar was taken,” said Kishore.
The decision was taken under Section 30 of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
He said 27 Maggi samples have been sent to a private laboratory in Kolkata and the ban has been imposed as a precautionary measure.