Disturbed fish eaters in Salcete taluka expressed worries over the incident of formalin being found in fish as a preservative following a raid by FDA officials in Margao.
Many Goans on social media demanded that the government put an instant stop to such illegal practices which can prove hazardous to the health of people.
“It is risky to eat fish now. I have decided to stop eating fish. What we see is that the tasty Goan fish is allowed to be exported and we are forced to eat poisonous fish. I appreciate the FDA for taking the bold step to crack down on the illegalities,” said Cynthia Colaco of Margao.
A Loutolim man J Barbosa, a regular fish eater, said, “I strongly demand that the samples be sent to private labs to be checked again because there is a possibility that due to pressure from the government, there can be twists in the reports. Fish is eaten by young and the old and after knowing the facts, we cannot continue making mistakes. Somebody has to toe the line,” he said.
N Naik from Housing Board in Margao said that a mechanism needs to be in place to check fish, especially during the ban period. “The FDA should conduct the checks repeatedly. We cannot afford to eat fish and fall sick. If a real ‘Goenkar’ is served poisoned fish, it’s a sad story. We cannot allow cancer to conquer us. The government should have concern regarding our health,” he said.
Vivek Naik from Margao also echoed similar sentiments. He said, “Government is providing subsidy to the Goa boat owners so
that they provide fish at subsidised rates but what we see here is that rotten fish from Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala is sold to us. These states have managed to divert their fish to Goa through agents and we are forced to have it unknowingly.”
Meanwhile, Kankonkar – an ex-sanitary inspector, opined that Goans cannot do without fish and the agency keeping a watch should be alert and vigilant besides being active and take the formalin users to task so that others should learn a lesson or two.
“If everything under the sun is contaminated and chemically unhygienic for consumption, we do not know what to eat and what not to eat since we have chemicals in fruits, vegetables, milk and milk products, chicken and now in fish,” said Navdeep Aguiar.
In this kind of situation where vegetables to fish and from fresh fruits to chicken have chemically tested positive there is nothing left to be consumed for healthy people. Now we should stop eating anything and everything as everything is laced with poisonous chemicals which are hazardous to health, stated an automobile engineer Ishwar.
A senior citizen recalled that during Portuguese regime, even if slight stale fish was found to be sold in market, officials/ inspectors would sprinkle phenyl or kerosene so that nobody could buy the product.