Ghee is made from milk. That we all know. But an expose' by Headlines Today reveals the ghee that you consume is not being prepared from milk. Rather, it is animal fat, crushed animal bones (to give it that granular texture), palm oil, essence (for the smell) and hazardous chemicals that are being used to prepare ghee.
Even more shocking is the fact that the people involved are continuing to operate despite a National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) notice.
Dilshad, one of the biggest traders in animal fat and on the wanted list after an NHRC notice to the Uttar Pradesh (UP) government, spoke to Headlines Today and offered a regular supply of animal fat to the tune of four to five tonne a month.
This is how it can kill
Ghee with animal remains
Possible effect: This can block your circulatory system leading to a heart-attack
Fake ghee with bone-dust
Possible effect: it can lead to brain-storke and gangrene. Long term exposurecan also damage liver and kidney and lead to digestive problems
Posionous chemicals in vegetables have many harmful effects and can even cost you your life
Excess lead: It can lead to brain-related problems. It can also lead to severe anameia
Excess cadmium: It can lead to cancer and also lead to kidney aliments as well as ailments related to the urinary tract
Excess chromium: It can damage your heart as well as your liver
Excess zinc: It's so harmful that it can acctually be a cause of abortion
The NHRC had issued a notice to the UP government to stop animal slaughter in Meerut, the hub from where animal fat is supplied to more than 250 clandestine ghee manufacturing units in UP, Madhya Pradesh and parts of the NCR (National Capital Region.
After the NHRC notice, the UP government carried out raids and claimed to have dismantled some of the factories where the animal fat is prepared.
But when the Headlines Today investigation team went to the spot, it found the furnaces where the fat is made were very much in existence.
The team also managed to track down Dilshad.
Posing as spurious ghee manufacturers, the team spoke to him on hidden camera.
Cocky, confident and boastful, he said that he could supply four to five tonne of animal fat a month. He boasted that he was already supplying animal fat to similar units in the NCR. During the course of investigation, the Headlines Today team also came to learn that the same desi ghee you buy for Rs.225 a kg is also available at much lower prices in places in the NCR. At Durga Dairy in Loni, Ghaziabad, desi ghee was being sold for Rs.120 a kg, it was found.
No doubt, this desi ghee was made using animal fat, palm oil, essence and chemicals, which was confirmed after samples were tested. No surprise then that the proprietor of Durga Dairy had earlier been arrested for selling adulterated ghee.
The Prevention of Adulteration Act does not carry too heavy a punishment and, therefore, he was able to get away with a small fine and is now back in business.
More than 250 companies are running on fake addresses in Hapur, Alipur, Bhind, Morena, Vidisha, Sagar and Indore.
Based on information given by Headlines Today, a raid was also conducted in Alipur, where several containers of adulterated ghee were seized.
An example of how the scam works is the case of Swad brand ghee. Its address was found to be that of a construction company. Shockingly, the Swad brand carries the Agmark for quality.