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Strict guidelines to bhandaras


GUWAHATI, June 15 - In view of the forthcoming Ambubachi Mela, the Kamrup Metro district administration has issued strict guidelines to the bhandaras for safe distribution of food to the devotees.

Officials said foodstuff prepared and served during Ambubachi Mela will be strictly monitored by the food safety department. The bhandaras have been directed to maintain utmost hygiene and sanitation while preparing and serving food.

As per the guidelines issued, all articles like flour, pulses, cereal, rice, edible oil and vegetables to be used for preparation of different foodstuff at bhandaras or langars during the Mela must be of best quality and packaged drinking water or any kind of drinking water must be ISI or BIS marked and the bottles should be in original sealed packed condition.

The bhandaras have been instructed to prepare the food items with minimum oil, spice and chillies. Every food handler should be in good health and they will have to wash their hands and feet with soap before and after cooking.

The bhandaras have been told that the floors of kitchens and dining rooms should be clean and dried at least twice a day.

All bhandaras or langars have to serve the same types of food at the same time uniformly and food can be served only inside the dining hall. The bhandaras or langars have also been directed to make their own arrangement for disposal of waste.

Besides, no fruit will be allowed to be served during the Mela and restrictions have also been imposed on prepared food brought from outside the bhandaras and also on serving of food on any roadside or temporary stall by any individual or organisation. Besides, devotees cannot be served any leftover food. The bhandaras cannot use plastic plates, cups and spoons for serving food and only paper cups and plates shall be allowed for serving food during the Mela. There will also be total restriction on distribution of foodstuff outside the dining hall by the bhandaras.

The food items recommended for serving to devotees include vegetables like squash, gourd, lady�s finger, beans, gram whole, moong dal, green chillies and paneer. A schedule for serving of various meals during the day has also been fixed for the bhandaras and langars.

The administration has also allocated specific locations to various bhandaras where they are to set up camps for providing food to the devotees. Deviation from declared norms will automatically lead to cancellation of permission and allocation of places for distribution of food items, officials said.

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