Indian woman to sue Australia's supermarket chain
Melbourne: A 25-year-old Indian woman, who almost died after consuming mushrooms laced with death caps, is suing Australia's largest supermarket chain for selling the food product to her.
Rajvir Kaur, a Newcastle resident, suffered severe food poisoning after she ate a curry cooked by her mother in April last year.
She barely survived after falling into a week-long coma following an emergency liver transplant, multiple organ failure, and follow up surgery on her bowel.
“I'm lucky to be alive,” Kaur, who was in hospital for four months, told The Sun-Herald.
“The doctors said my body is strong - I survived a lot of hours without a liver.”
Her mother, who cooked the meal, and her housemate were also fell ill after eating the mushroom and potato curry.
Now Kaur is suing Woolworths, because she believes the mushrooms her mother used had been contaminated by death cap mushrooms.
Woolworths, however, is denying the claim, and cites an ACT Health and ACT Police investigation into the incident last year.
“As reported last year, ACT Health and ACT Police found there was no evidence that these mushrooms were sold at Woolworths,” a spokeswoman for the store said.
“We have nothing else to add,” she said.
But Kaur believes the mushrooms were purchased up to a fortnight before her mother used in the curry, meaning that it is unlikely that the same batch would have been present at the time of the investigation.
“They don't believe me - they say [the] death cap didn't come from Woolies [that they] could be from anywhere,” she said.
“But I'm not stupid. Everyone knows that you don't pick mushrooms from the forest. The mushrooms came from Woollies - I remember.”
In addition to the day-to-day fight to remain healthy, Rajvir is now also facing a battle to stay in the country.
Kaur is on a bridging visa and may be forced to return to India if the Immigration Department does not accept her application for permanent residency.
She cannot work and is being supported by the local Sikh community.