Dhubri, Aug. 22: After egg, fish and vegetable syndicates, it is the milk syndicate. It not only controls the price but also sells adulterated milk in the market.
Sources in the market alleged that a section of big hoteliers calls the shot on milk market as it buys nearly 10,000-15,000 litres of milk that arrives in Dhubri town from sar villages and fixes market prices. “They purchase the entire milk by engaging brokers and local milk sellers, pick up milk required for their hotels and confectioneries and sell the rest in the market at the price they fix,” a source said.
Monojit Paul, a resident of ward No. 4, alleged that in the absence of control over sale of milk by the authorities, consumers have to cough up the price fixed by the syndicate.
Rafiqul Sheikh, a milkman of Chalakura village, said around 15,000 litres of milk come from Chalakura, Majherchar, Binnachera, Galakata and Mahamayar char villages, most of which is purchased by the hoteliers.
There are nearly 250 small and big hotels and confectioneries in Dhubri town and about 1,500 across the district.
The municipal act on selling of milk states that milk with specific gravity (SG) of 30 and below cannot be sold, a source said, adding that surprisingly neither municipal board health officials nor food inspectors measure the SG of milk sold in the market.
Dhubri district food inspector Nayan Kumar Das said they collect milk samples and send them regularly to Guwahati for testing. “We have got the milk SG at satisfactory level,” he added.
Dhubri additional deputy commissioner Pranab Kumar Sarma promised to take action against the milk syndicate.