Haryana Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) has filed an FIR against five foreign nationals for illegal export of COVID-19 drugs mainly; Covifor (remdesivir), FabiFlu and Lopikast. Besides this, the team has also seized narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.
The state FDA has booked them for violating different sections under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act 1940, the Disaster Management Act 2005, Foreigners Act 1946 and Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act 1985.
The state FDA officials seized drugs which are used for the treatment of COVID-19 patients, mainly 48 vials of Covifor (each vial’s MRP is Rs 5400), 1870 Fabiflu tablets (each tablet’s MRP is Rs 75) and 18 tablets of Lopikast. Along with these COVID-19 essential medicines, the officials also recovered Rs 53,33,000 in cash from accused persons.
Narendra Ahooja, State Drug Controller, Haryana, informed, “During the raid, the FDA Haryana team found guilty foreign nationals; Mohmad from Iraq, Othmana A Aeed from Iraq, and Nilu Far from Uzbekistan in the hoarding of COVID- 19 essential medicines. All of them could not produce a valid passport and visa. From their place, the team seized a huge quantity of medicines which are for compassionate use in the treatment of COVID-19 patients. These are being illegally exported from India and reportedly are short in the market. So, they are being illegally hoarded for black marketing as a source of profiteering.”
He also informed that Amandeep Chauhan, Drugs Control Officer, Gurugram had also received information of illegal importation and stocking of narcotic drugs in the residential premises of Sector-57, Gurugram. Following directions of Ashok Kumar Meena, Commissioner, Food and Drugs, Administration, he contacted the local police and raided the residential premises of D-S-711 Aloha, Gurugram. From there, they recovered a huge quantity of drugs including narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances which were in the possession of foreign nationals called Aws Raad Nealmah Al-Hendi and Akram Faiz. During the raid, the team seized 7160 ampoules of Phenobarbitone Sodium Injection I.P., containing 1432 gm of Phenobarbitone, which is more than commercial quantity and 1200 strips of lobazam 10. The team also recovered Rs 35,50,000 thousand in cash.
Ahooja informed, “All over Haryana we are taking every possible measure to monitor the stock performance of all medicines. Particularly for COVID-19 related essential medicines, we are aiming to equalise the demand and supply requirements and avoid unethical activities. Such activities will not be tolerated and the Department will take strict actions against them.” He also indicated that more such raids will be conducted in Haryana.