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Kerala HC notice to Govt on Cadbury issue

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Kochi , Nov. 6

A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court on Thursday issued a notice to the State Government, State Health Service Director, and Cadbury India Pvt Ltd on a writ petition seeking a direction for banning all the products of Cadbury in the state in the light of detection of worms in some dairy milk chocolates sold in the State.

The Bench, comprising the Chief Justice J.L. Gupta, and Mr Justice K. Padmanabhan Nair, issued notice when the petition filed by Mr Joe Winston of Thiruvananthapuram came up before it. According to him, the 35 bars of diary milk chocolates bought by him were found infested with insects when their wrappers were removed. In fact, the State Health Service Director had banned the sale of June 2003 batch of dairy milk chocolates following reports of sale of worm infested chocolates. Though the sale of June batch were banned, worms were found in the August batch as well.

The petitioner pointed out that the chocolates had contained worms because of the use of substandard raw material or poor sanitary conditions of the company's plant or godowns. The detection of worm clearly indicated that the products were decomposed and decayed and unfit for human consumption.

The petition sought a direction to the State Government and the Health Director to conduct a thorough examination of all the products of Cadbury thorough an agency. Besides, initiation of criminal proceedings against the company under the provisions of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act and Indian Penal Code (IPC) had also been sought.

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