Bhubaneswar: The traces of formalin, a cancer-causing toxic chemical, was found in fish samples collected from a local market in Bhubaneswar on Friday ringing an alarm bell among the fish eaters in the state.
Confirming the development, Fisheries and Animal Resources Development department commissioner-cum-secretary Vishal Gagan said the fisheries officials had collected samples of nine varieties of fishes from the Unit-IV fish market in Bhubaneswar and sent these for laboratory test. During the test, traces of Formalin were found in some Pamphlet fish.
According to sources, the Odisha government on Thursday had ordered for laboratory testing of fish samples after Assam government recently imposed a ban on fish imports from Andhra Pradesh following reports of formalin presence in the fish stocks.
“The fisheries department will write to collectors of 10 districts asking them to form a task force and conduct sample test of fish after collecting them from different parts of their respective district,” Gagan said.
Gagan said the state government will hold talk with Assam government to know what steps it has taken in this regard.
According to sources, formalin is used to preserve dead bodies in mortuaries to prevent their rotting. However, in this case, formalin is used to lace fish and other sea produce so that the stocks remain intact for many days.