Longleng, June 17, 2023 :- A total of 43 villagers from Pongching village in the Longleng district of Nagaland fell ill after consuming fish purchased from a local shop, sparking a significant health scare in the community. The affected individuals were swiftly admitted to the Longleng district hospital, prompting authorities to launch a thorough investigation into the incident.
The distressing reports of mass food poisoning surfaced on June 16, drawing immediate attention from local authorities. A team led by Longleng Superintendent of Police (SP) quickly arrived at the district hospital to initiate a preliminary inquiry into the matter.
Upon reaching the hospital, investigators were confronted with a distressing sight. Numerous villagers, exhibiting symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea, were in need of urgent medical attention. It was discovered that these individuals had consumed the fish during their lunch break on June 15 while working in a terraced paddy field. Later in the evening, they began experiencing severe abdominal pain and gastrointestinal distress.
As the investigation unfolded, it was revealed that approximately 70 individuals from Pongching village had collectively purchased the fish from a local shopkeeper on June 14 for their communal meal planned for the following day. In light of this information, officials meticulously gathered samples of the cooked fish consumed by the affected villagers, as well as samples from the remaining stock held by the vendor.
These samples will undergo comprehensive testing and analysis to determine the exact cause of the food poisoning outbreak. Local authorities are committed to identifying any potential contaminants or toxins that may have led to the widespread illness in Pongching village. The results of the investigation will aid in implementing necessary measures to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.
Medical professionals at the Longleng district hospital are providing the necessary treatment and care to ensure the recovery of the affected. Local authorities are closely monitoring the situation and will continue to extend their support to the affected individuals and their families.
Representatives from the food safety department, Longleng Chamber of Commerce, and local law enforcement, accompanied by civil administration officials, joined forces to investigate the incident and gather crucial evidence. They recorded statements from the doctors attending to the patients, the affected individuals themselves, and the fish seller in question. In a precautionary measure, the shop responsible for selling the contaminated fish has been sealed off pending further investigation.
The collected samples have been sent to the state public health laboratory’s food analyst for comprehensive testing to ascertain the exact cause and nature of the contamination. Meanwhile, the government has urged the public to remain calm, cooperate with the ongoing investigation, and refrain from spreading baseless rumors or misinformation.