In a shocking revelation, Jewel Balti, an Indian restaurant located in Newport, was forcibly shut down due to grievous hygiene violations posing an 'enormous risk to public health.' The closure came after hygiene inspectors, acting on a complaint received by Newport Council in January 2022, discovered a kitchen riddled with filth and infested with pests. The severity of the conditions unearthed was beyond the ordinary, featuring decomposing maggots, live cockroaches, and a rat infestation.
Resistance and Revelations
Aktar Miah, the former director of the now-defunct establishment, initially attempted to bar the inspectors from entering the premises. However, he was eventually compelled to admit the kitchen required significant cleaning. As the investigators ventured further, they were met with the grim reality of widespread grime, improperly stored uncontaminated meat, and undeniable evidence of rodent and cockroach infestations.
Guilty as Charged
Aktar Miah and his brother Afzal Miah, directors of Desi Kitchen, were subsequently taken to court, where they pleaded guilty to multiple counts of hygiene violations. Aktar Miah received a suspended 12-month jail sentence while Afzal Miah was handed a suspended 10-month sentence. Beyond their suspended jail terms, the directors were ordered to perform unpaid work and cover court costs. The restaurant, Desi Kitchen, was slapped with a hefty fine of £14,000.
Hope for Redemption
In the aftermath of the debacle, Aktar's wife took over the reins of the restaurant, leading to significant improvements in the establishment's hygiene standards. The transformation, while remarkable, serves as a stark reminder of the essential role that proper hygiene practices play in the food and beverage industry, and the dire consequences that can arise when these are disregarded.