Tribune News Service
Patiala, January 3
The police have busted a milk adulteration racket wherein two unemployed youths of Kularan village in Patiala used poultry feed as an ingredient to double the quantity of milk.
Behind bars, the accused, Harpreet Singh and Gurpreet Singh, ran a dairy business without actually owning any cow or buffalo. They would purchase the feed, a kind of dried white glucose powder, from Haryana and allegedly mix 10 kg of it in 100 litres of water at their two-room “dairy” in the village. They would then add this mixture to 100 litres of milk they procured from nearby villages.
How much adulterated milk they daily prepared and sold was being ascertained, but 500 litres was supplied to Ludhiana’s Supreme Dairy alone, a police official said. Besides Ludhiana, they had customers in Khanna, Rajpura and other parts of Punjab, he said.
Patiala SSP Vikramjit Duggal said the owners of Supreme Dairy had been summoned for questioning. Attempts to contact the dairy’s owners proved futile.
“Chicken feed being used to prepare adulterated milk is unheard of, though rackets using urea, other chemicals, refined oil and even detergent have been unearthed in the past. It is being investigated how long the accused have been in this illegal business,” the SSP said.
By mixing poultry feed in milk, the accused cheated the dairy testing labs, which check fat content but have no mechanism to check animal or foreign fat, a health expert said. Such milk was harmful for children and elderly and its prolonged use could even lead to cancer, they said.
A team led by SP Palwinder Cheema conducted the raid and arrested Harpreet and Gurpreet from the spot.
An FIR under Sections 272, 273, 420 and 120-B of the IPC has been registered at Samana Sadar police station. Health officers were called to the police station to collect milk samples for testing, said Cheema.
A chiller, 200 litres of stored milk, 25 kg of white powder, 125 kg of poultry feed, machinery to check fat content and containers to store and mix powder and milk have been seized.