Friday, January 29, 2010

PMK takes liquor fight to ‘unhygienic’ side eats

By G Saravanan

Published on January 29,2010:

CHENNAI: Pro-prohibition Pattali Makkal Katchi has decided to hit bars where it hurts.

Though the party’s avowed opposition to alcohol has not stopped its flow in the State and protected people from its effects, its latest move could get the thumbs up from people who drink. One of the party’s leaders has now decided to target the “unhygienic” side eats sold at TASMAC bars.
R Jayaraman, the PMK floor leader in Chennai Corporation, on Thursday urged the civic body’s public health department to test the quality of “side dishes” and other food items sold at TASMAC bars.
Chennai has around 400 TASMAC bars and they are permitted to sell snacks like fried grams and water sachets but all of them sell side eats like fried chicken, mutton and fish apart from omelettes, cauliflower pakoras and sundal. To sell these items, they need to obtain food licences from the Corporation.
Speaking at the council meeting, Jayaraman said, “There have been several complaints that food items sold at these bars are prepared in unhygienic conditions.” He said most of the bars were given licences to sell snacks only, but they used it to come up with impromptu restaurants, selling many products.
Supporting the PMK leader, Congress councillor Rukmangathan also voiced concern over the rampant sale of unhygienic food at TASMAC bars. Both councillors wanted the food items sold at these bars tested.
Reacting to the councillors’ statements, Mayor M Subramanian said the civic body’s health department officials would begin conducting regular checks at TASMAC bars for quality.
Jayaraman made it clear that his party’s objective was closure of bars.

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