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Maha: COVID-19 swab sticks packed in unhygienic conditions in slum; supplier booked

·1-min read

Mumbai, May 6 (PTI) A case has been registered against a supplier of swab sticks used for collecting nasal and throat samples for COVID-19 testing, after a video allegedly showed that the items were being packed in unhygienic conditions at a slum in neighbouring Thane district, police said on Thursday.

Earlier this week, a video surfaced on social media, which showed that swab sticks were being packed at a slum in Sant Dnyaneshwar Nagar in Ulhasnagar, an official said.

Following this, officials from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), local civic body and police visited the slum and recovered packets of swab sticks from a few households on Wednesday, he said.

A case has been registered against the supplier, who had hired labour from the households, under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Epidemic Diseases Act, he said, adding that so arrests have been made so far.

The video showed women and children packing swab sticks that are used in COVID-19 tests, without wearing any gloves or masks, it was stated.

Some sticks were also left lying on floor mats and children handled them with their bare hands, the official said.

Women were being paid Rs 20 for packing 1,000 swab sticks in plastic packets, the official said, adding that further probe is underway. PTI DC ARU ARU