TT, March 31: A trader in the Park Circus area was arrested yesterday for allegedly selling "plastic" eggs to a Tiljala resident.
Shamim Ansari was picked up on the basis of a complaint filed by Anita Kumar, 36, with Karaya police station.
In her complaint, Anita said she had bought more than a dozen eggs from Ansari. The moment she put them in a frying pan, there was a pungent smell, the complaint said. The albumen resembled burnt plastic, it added.
The enforcement branch of Calcutta police will investigate the case. Samples of the eggs Kumar had bought would be sent for forensic examinations, an officer said.
Ansari has been charged under IPC sections 273 (sale of noxious food or drink), 420 (cheating) and 120 (concealing design to commit offence punishable with imprisonment).
A team of the Calcutta Municipal Corporation - including mayoral council member in charge of health, Atin Ghosh - visited Ansari's shop today and collected 90 such eggs.
"We have come to know that Ansari got the eggs from a wholesaler in Manindra Mitra Row, Sealdah," Ghosh said.
A CMC team went to the wholesaler, who in turn said he had procured the eggs from Guntur (Andhra Pradesh) and Hyderabad, said another civic official.
"The civic body will test the eggs, too, in its laboratory," Ghosh said.
A biker was killed and the pillion rider injured when a vehicle hit the two-wheeler near City Centre New Town on Thursday night. Kunal Ghosh, a resident Jyangra under Baguiati police station, was declared dead at a hospital. The pillion rider is being treated at the hospital for multiple fractures.
KalimNews: In such instances of reported plastic eggs sold in Kerala it was found that these were real eggs. As per the report handed over to the Food Safety Commissioner, the samples tested are said to be real eggs, but rotten. It claims that the texture of eggs changes after being exposed to different temperatures. Before sending it to different stores, the eggs are kept in freezers for many days. However, while they are being transported to different places, the temperature varies resulting in its texture change. Meanwhile, Dr George T Oommen, director of Centre for Advanced Studies in Poultry Science, assures that there aren't any techniques to make perfect eggs artificially as of now and are not being imported from China. The authorities have also decided to conduct a detailed test by collecting samples from different parts of the state.
Muralee Thummarukudy about Chinese eggs
In a detailed Facebook post, Muralee Thummarukudy, chief of Disaster Risk Reduction in the UN Environment Programme, explained why the news on Chinese eggs cannot be believed.
"It has been 10 years since the artificial egg news broke in China, later it reached Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines and finally in India after a decade. It is a good story. A big factory, where Chinese make 1000s of eggs using maida and chemicals. The people who eat them get sick and die. But, the story has a problem. Nobody has seen any artificial eggs in any of these countries [translated from Malayalam]," Muralee writes on his Facebook account.
He also explains that selling eggs is not a hugely profitable business. Since an egg costs Rs 5, the merchant buys it for Rs 4, taking a profit of Rs 1. So, they will be willing to buy artificial eggs from dealers only if its available for a lesser rate. The fake eggs have to be imported after clearing many procedures in China and India.
"It has to be noted that these eggs are perfectly made, though making them artificially is not an easy task. It will cost at least Rs 5,000 to take the 3D print of an egg. As far as I understand, China doesn't have a business model of spending Rs 5,000 for making something and selling it for Rs 5. Not just this, the mass production of artificial eggs will be expensive and such factories need license to operate and professionals to handle the machines," he adds.