Ketchup adulteration case against Nestle set aside

Gandhinagar, Oct 28 (IANS) An adulteration complaint against Nestle India, makers of Maggi tomato ketchup, pending in a trial court has been set aside by the Gujarat High Court.

In a judgment made available Thursday, Justice Akil Kureshi struck down the case registered against Nestle for violating provisions of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act.

Samples of the suspected ketchup were taken by government agencies almost four years before the authorities initiated the prosecution against the company in a trial court in Kutch.

The high court said that after such long time even if the company wished to dispute the contents of the sample and seek further report from a laboratory, it would be a futile exercise as the tomato ketchup would have perished.

It took the authorities four years, after samples were taken and scrutinised for adulteration, to launch prosecution against the company.

However, it took the high court less than four months to set aside the criminal case pending in a Kutch court.

Justice Kureshi allowed the company’s petition that since the shelf life of the food item had expired nearly four years back, no meaningful purpose would be served in getting a second report.

However, counsel for the government said that no case for quashing was made out and the Nestle petition should be rejected.

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