An Indian restaurant condemned for a lack of hygiene standards and the poor condition of its kitchen equipment has landed its former owner in court.
Shazan Miah, who previously operated Deedar restaurant in Devizes, Wiltshire, will be sentenced before Sailsbury Crown Court next month after admitting breaching 12 Food Hygiene Regulations.
Environmental health inspectors who visited the restaurant last year observed a number of hygiene failures, including chicken left uncovered in a dirty sink and cobwebs in close proximity to food.
The restaurant’s attitude towards maintaining cooking equipment, such as deep fat fryers, also fell below basic standards.
The Wiltshire Times reported that Amanda Slee, prosecuting for Wiltshire Council, described the standard of cleaning inside the premises as “generally poor”.
She said: “The kitchen walls were very dirty, greased and stained. The deep fat fryer was in a poor condition and a metal sieve was found encrusted with old food debris.”
Slee also said inspectors saw an employee rinsing his hands without soap after handling raw meat and then using a tea towel to handle the meat.
The same tea towel was then used to handle cooked tandoori chicken and lamb despite the risk of bacteria being spread.
The newspaper said that Miah was served with three improvement notices but when inspectors returned to the restaurant two months after their first visit they found the orders had not been complied with.
The paper noted that the restaurant was taken over by a new owner, Misbah Ahmed, in January 2012, and he insists the restaurant no longer has any issue with food hygienes. “I have improved everything and it’s been completely refurbished,” he told the paper. “Food hygiene is very important to me. All the staff have been trained.”