In­dian lab de­vel­ops beef de­tec­tion kits

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

MUM­BAI: A gov­ern­ment-run lab­o­ra­tory in western In­dia has de­vel­oped por­ta­ble “beef de­tec­tion kits” that will al­low po­lice to quickly de­ter­mine whether meat is that of an il­le­gally slaugh­tered cow, an of­fi­cial said yes­ter­day. The slaugh­ter of cows, which are revered by Hin­dus, and the pos­ses­sion or con­sump­tion of beef is banned in most In­dian states, with some im­pos­ing life sen­tences for break­ing the law. “We have been work­ing on beef de­tec­tion kits for the past eight months and these will be dis­trib­uted to Ma­ha­rash­tra and Mum­bai po­lice in Au­gust,” K Y Kulka­rni, di­rec­tor of the Ma­ha­rash­tra state gov­ern­ment’s Foren­sic Sci­ence Lab­o­ra­to­ries, said.

Kulka­rni said the new kits were based on the ELISA method, where color changes of sam­ples iden­tify a sub­stance. Po­lice would just need to pour a sam­ple into the kit and it would change colour to iden­tify whether it was bovine meat or not within 30 min­utes. At present it can take sev­eral days for a lab­o­ra­tory to iden­tify the source of meat through tra­di­tional DNA tests, leav­ing cattle traders lan­guish­ing in jail, of­ten in­no­cently, while the out­come of tests are awaited. Kulka­rni said the kits would cost 8,000 ru­pees ($123) each. — AFP

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