Kolkata: A shopkeeper was arrested here on Friday for allegedly selling "artificial eggs" to a woman, police said.
"A shopkeeper named Md. Shamim Ansari was arrested on Friday morning from Park Circus Market for allegedly selling artificial plastic eggs to the complainant Anita Kumar," an officer from the Kolkata Police's Enforcement Branch said.
Kumar lodged a police complaint at Kolkata's Karaya police station on Thursday evening after she discovered that she was sold "fake eggs" that had a strange "plastic-like quality" when they were spread out on a pan.
"I tested my suspicion by putting a match to it and it caught fire. The shell also looked plastic. I was sure that this was not natural and, being a mother, I felt I should alert the public," Kumar said.
The Kolkata Municipal Corporation ordered an investigation into the matter.
A team from the civic body, headed by Mayor-in-Council (Health) Atin Ghosh, raided various city markets and seized similar samples of artificial eggs on Friday. According to Ghosh, the eggs sold by Ansari were procured from a wholesaler in the city's Muchipara area.
"We have seized a crate of eggs from the wholesaler who sold the eggs to Ansari. We will also collect at least three more crates of similar samples from other shops in the market and send them to the concerned department for analysis," Ghosh said.
Accused Ansari bought eggs worth Rs 1.15 lakh from the wholesaler.
"According to the Food Safety and Standards Act, food adulteration is a punishable offence. If these eggs are found to be life-threatening then offenders may face major punishments like life imprisonment and a huge fine," Ghosh added.