The High Court (HC) on Sunday ordered 14 registered companies to stop producing and selling pasteurised milk for the next five weeks. The HC bench of Justice Syed Refaat Ahmed and Justice Md Iqbal Kabir passed the order. Further hearing on the issue will take place on August 25.
According to the latest test report published by Professor ABM Faroque, the director of Dhaka University Biomedical Research Centre at the time, various types of antibiotics, detergent as well as other forms of unsafe materials had been found in the test samples of pasteurised milk.
Earlier on July 14, the same HC bench asked the Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) to get the packaged milk of all the fourteen registered companies tested at four laboratories in the city within a week, the laboratories being Institute of Public Health; International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh; Feed and Food Safety Laboratory under Bangladesh Livestock Research Institute; and Bangladesh Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.
The labs were asked to test for the bacterial count, coliform, staphylococcus-sp, acidity, formalin, detergent, and antibiotics in the milk samples. Afterwards, the HC asked the BSTI to inform what follow-up steps it had taken in response to the two test reports on packaged milk, recently prepared by the Dhaka University researchers.
The BSTI has also been asked (by the HC) how MUCH TIME the institute would need so as to develop the laboratory and parameters to detect antibiotics in milk.
The latest and second test was done on ten samples of pasteurised and non-pasteurised milk.
In June, the Department of Pharmacy and Biomedical Research Centre of Dhaka University claimed they had detected the presence of antibiotics and detergent in milk.