The Department of Supplies Management (DoSM) has begun intensive market monitoring in the valley from Tuesday and is currently ongoing. The week-long campaign is booking the traders involved in market anomalies under the legal framework. In its intensive market monitoring campaign, the department has targeted to cross-check as many outlets as possible in the first stage of its effort.
The department has categorized six sectors for inspection. Meat and grocery shops, slaughterhouses are in the first sector, second sector consists of transportation, third sector comprises of gasoline and construction materials, dairy products and bottled water fall under the fourth sector, eateries, sweets, and prepared foods are in the fifth sector and finally pharmacies and medical clinics make up the sixth sector.
DoSM Director General Kumar Dahal said the department had changed the modality of market monitoring to ensure quality service to consumers. “Based on the types of sectors, six teams including experts of the concerned areas have been mobilized to ensure the effective market inspections this time,” said Dahal, the newly appointed chief of the department.
As per the department, the cross-check is being done in the respective outlets at the time of the peak business hours of their products. Dahal said the intensive market monitoring were being carried out early in the morning. Meat products and vegetable shops along with medical clinics usually operate in the morning.
The department has cross-checked over 190 firms in the first three days of its campaign. During the inspection, many eateries were grilled for not maintaining proper hygiene standards, posing risks to the consumers. Meat shops inspected by the department were found to have a lack of proper refrigeration system, poor hygiene, non-existent price lists, defective measuring devices and expired licenses. The department destroyed huge quantities of the meat and fish from different locations of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur districts that failed the inspection.
Similarly, the intensive market monitoring team also penalized 65 public vehicles for charging a high fare to the passengers. According to the department, the monitoring team in coordination with the traffic police charged fines of NPR. 5,000 to each of the offending transporters.
Likewise, a large number of medical clinics were found failing to issue the proper billing while selling medicines. The absence of licensed pharmacists and selling of unauthorized medicinal and cosmetic products were rampant in these drugs stores.
Dahal said they would initiate legal action against the shopkeepers who were found guilty. “We have planned to regular follow-up of these shops also in the second phase and if found guilty in the follow-up, we will file a case against them under serious public litigation,” he said.
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Reference: Kathmandu Post