Foodborne diseases are an important reason for diarrhoeal deaths among Indian children (<5 years). Since many foodborne illnesses arise from home kitchens, mothers can be the final line of defense. It was attempted to assess perceptions and practices of mothers on food safety. Quantitative data collected from respondents (n = 90) using a Knowledge, Attitudes, Beliefs and Practices (KABP) questionnaire, showed that, over 90% wash hands before feeding children, eating, serving or cooking food, but usage of soap is very limited. Over 60% store leftover cooked foods at room temperature as a majority (82%) do not own refrigerators. High incidence of foodborne illnesses was reported in the families (21%) and the community (12%). Though 48% buy packed foods, a majority (78%) do not recognize symbols on food labels. Significant associations (p < 0.05) were found between standard of living/literacy and certain food safety practices. Qualitative data obtained from three focus group discussions, reiterated most of the observations made in the survey. Television is the preferred medium to seek information on food safety.