Stating that the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) is being targeted by vested interests that have been making money on import of fish, Health Minister Vishwajit Rane on Friday said he would demand a permanent ban on fish imports and also push for a ban on exports.
The minister also said that testing of fish would continue and stated that once the ban is removed, the government shall not allow any truck to enter Goa without being certified by FDA.
“Today if you notice on the issue of fish and formalin, there is a conspiracy to target FDA. There is some vested interest that has been making money on the imports of fish. There are some people who are actually destroying the lives of the people of Goa. Our government is united in banning fish import. I welcome the decision of the Chief Minister to ban import of fish for 15 days but I will continue to push for a permanent ban on import of fish,” Rane said.
He added, “The only solution to this issue of formalin in fish is to ban import of fish into Goa and we should also ban export of fish so that we have fish for our own consumption. Sometimes strong decisions are required in the interest of the people and the State. Fish coning from out can be stored only by lacing it with formalin this is what I am told.”
He said he read several papers in the past few days to understand the issue and that FDA will continue testing of fish in markets on a daily basis. “Even after the ban is removed, we shall not allow any truck to enter Goa without being certified by FDA. I strongly believe that the ban on imports of fish is the only solution,” he added.
The Health Minister on Thursday had admitted that the term ‘permissible limit’ used by him during the clarification on ‘formalin-in-fish’ row was a ‘mistake’. “The Chief Minister has taken the decision to ban the fish imports after giving it a deep thought. The issue is serious hence he has taken the decision. I made a mistake in using the word permissible limit that created more confusion,” he had said.