Jammu’s BJP legislator Ramesh Arora terms momos Tibetan dumplings as health hazard,effigy of momo burned
SRINAGAR,June30: Indians are known to burn effigies of politicians who are out of favour. But Jammu today broke new grounds with an effigy of a momo — Tibetan dumplings that have become a hugely popular street food.
With the bizzare message “momo kills” written on it, Jammu’s BJP legislator Ramesh Arora solemnly marched down street with some followers this morning. The effigy of momo was then ceremonially burnt.
Mr Arora had first made news with his warnings about momos a couple of weeks ago. That time, he had said it was a “health hazard”. In the intervening weeks, the danger level of momos appears to have grown.
So how the dumplings — which are flour casings stuffed with chicken, prawns or vegetables and mostly steamed can be fatal to humans? Turns out that the legislator’s real objection is not to momos per se, but MSG or monosodium glutamate, which, he thinks, is added to the stuffing to enhance taste.
Ajinomoto (monosodium glutamate) used in the recipe for making Momos to enhance its taste is harmful to health and can even cause cancer. They have been found to be the root cause of several life-threatening diseases,” Mr Arora was quoted as saying by news agency Press Trust of India.
A couple of decades ago, a pinch of MSG, widely known as ajinomoto, was a must-add in Chinese cuisine, whether it was cooked in restaurants or at home. But the use of MSG dwindled after it came be widely believed that it carried health risks.
MSG is not a banned substance but there are strictures on its use.
The Food Corporation of India can take action against any firm which uses MSG beyond permissible limits. The website Food Safety Helpline run by the FSSAI says, “It is popularly believed that large doses of MSG can cause headaches, nausea and other feelings of discomfort collectively known as “Chinese Restaurant Syndrome”, although controlled studies have failed to identify such symptoms. The USFDA, the premier regulatory body in USA, considers MSG to be “generally recognized as safe”.