It wasn’t a lizard, it wasn’t E.coli, it was mass hysteria at school in India

A report released by the Public Health Institute (PHI) on Thursday ruled out the possibility of food poisoning due to Escherichia coli (E-coli) at the Government Urdu Higher Primary School in DJ Halli. samples of the food collected from the school revealed that microorganisms such as the E-coli bacterium was not found in high numbers. “There is insignificant growth of the bacterium (E-coli). Thus, it cannot cause food poisoning, ” said Dr Ramesh, senior consultant, PHI.

To cause food poisoning, Dr Ramesh said, the E-coli content in food should be more than 1,00,000 Colony Forming Units (CFU) per gram.

However, in the food samples of the midday meal supplied by the Akshaya Patra Foundation of Iskcon, the e-coli content was just 80 to 90 CFU.

Panic attack?

With the possibility of food poisoning nearly ruled out, officials term the incident a mass hysteria.

Dr Rajini, District Health Officer, said, “It was a panic attack. We understand that two children, who had seen the lizard in their food vomited at the sight of it.

When others learnt about it, the subsequent reaction would have followed,” she said, adding that the lizard was not cooked and Salmonella bacteria was not found in the food samples.

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A former professor of food safety and the publisher of, Powell is passionate about food, has five daughters, and is an OK goaltender in pickup hockey. Download Doug’s CV here. Dr. Douglas Powell editor, retired professor, food safety 3/289 Annerley Rd Annerley, Queensland 4103 61478222221 I am based in Brisbane, Australia, 15 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time