HC says substandard drugs ‘slow poison’, demands report from govt

HC says substandard drugs ‘slow poison’, demands report from govt
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Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Tuesday directed the state government to place before it an affidavit indicating action taken in respect of the substandard medical samples tested among the drugs and consumables supplied by the JK Medical Supplies Corporation Ltd, a government agency.
The court directed the government to place before it particulars of all officers who approved such drugs for sale and supply, as well as the civil and criminal action taken against them.
The court passed these directions after Advocate Haqani pointed out a newspaper report that said 81 percent of drugs tested by the Drug and Food Control department were found to be of substandard quality. Haqani, who also acts as Amicus Curiae in the case, stated that the Drug and Food Control department tested several samples of drugs in the year 2017-2018 and found 69 drugs to be of substandard quality. These samples included 30 from Jammu and 51 from Kashmir region. Of the substandard drugs, seven drugs were supplied by the JK Medical Supplies Corporation Ltd (JKMSCL).
Having taken suo motu cognisance of reports on corruption in J&K government’s medical departments, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Alok Aradhe directed state authorities to eradicate this menace and place before the court the action-taken report against the erring officers.
The bench observed that substandard drugs were like slow poison and the court cannot remain a mute spectator on such grave matters.
The court was today informed that pricing for stents was being addressed by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Government of India. The court said that the latest report on this pricing be placed before it on the next hearing.