Goa Health Minister Vishwajit Rane on Monday rubbished allegations of the Congress party, which on Sunday had alleged that formalin continues to be used to preserve fish which is sold in Goa’s markets. Mr. Rane told mediapersons at the State Secretariat on Monday that the Congress was trying to trigger a controversy out of a non-issue and questioned the authority of the Congress leaders who on Sunday, quoting a laboratory report, had alleged that fish in Goa was formalin-laced.“Yesterday’s [Sunday] press conference was rubbish. They are not scientists. Girish Chodankar is not a scientist, he is a teacher. He should go back to teaching because he has lost miserably,” an agitated Mr. Rane said. Goa Congress president Girish Chodankar on Sunday alleged that fish, especially mackerel which was sold in Goa’s markets, was found with 2 ppm traces of formalin. Mr. Rane accused the Congress of creating unwarranted panic. “What Congress is doing is only playing politics out of nothing. Let them [Congress] tell me which labs they tested, how they tested and the methodology,” he said.The controversy involving use of formalin in fish erupted in July last year after a team of State Food and Drugs Authority found traces of formalin in fish being sold in a South Goa fish market during an early morning raid after the fish arrived from some Southern States.After much outrage, the government had said that efforts would be taken to check fish which was imported into the State from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
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