Mizoram: Finding that most of the hand sanitizers marketed in Mizoram and in other states in the north east are found to be sub-standard, the drugs controller of Mizoram has strengthened surveillance across the state to check the sale of inferior quality sanitizers.
This step was taken after filing five cases against sanitizer manufacturers of Assam, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh for having marketed low quality alcohol based hand sanitizers during the peak time of C-19 pandemic in the state. Most of the products are marketed from Guwahati, said Lalsawma Pachuau, drugs controller of Mizoram.
As per World Health Organization (WHO), a hand sanitizer should contain ethanol 80% or isopropyl alcohol 75%.
“We have no shortage in the availability of sanitizers, but we face a severe problem and that is with sub-standard quality products. Most of the alcohol based hand sanitizers marketed in Mizoram is manufactured with inadequate concentrations of alcohol. This is not adequate to ensure disinfection in the midst of the C-19 pandemic.
Every day positive cases are increasing, so we have to take measures to minimize the risks. Our department has taken cases against five manufacturers of other states for having sold the products here. Guwahati is the gateway and the C&F offices are working there. We have served notice to them also. Further investigations are going on,” said Lalsawma.
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When contacted, drugs controller of Assam, Hridayananda Mahanta, said he will form a special squad to investigate the problem. He said all the north eastern states are procuring sanitizers and drugs from Guwahati only where the C&F agents of other state companies are located.
The officials of the drugs control department will check all the sanitizer manufacturing companies in next week, he said by adding that most of the north eastern states are procuring sanitizers from companies licensed in Assam.
“Recently following the direction of the DCGI we have given licences to several manufactures, but as far as I know their products are good in quality wise. However, since the DC of Mizoram has stated about substandard quality I will form a special squad to inspect the facilities to check the quality of the sanitizer manufactured in Assam.
In addition to this, I will instruct my officers to collect samples of products marketed from other states. In total, the department will conduct a market survey and if any violation is found, legal action will be taken against the marketers and the manufacturers,” said Mahanta.
Dr. Naryan Goswami, drugs controller of Tripura said the department officials in the state draw samples of sanitizers and put them for quality check every week. So far no complaint has been received of substandard quality. However he will strengthen surveillance in the market.
Rimote Kumar Meetel, drugs controller of Manipur said there is also chances of inferior quality sanitizers available in the market. Since he is on medical leave he will take stock of the situation in next week only.
But an assistant drugs controller from Nagaland said as of now no complaint of sub-standard sanitizer has been reported anywhere in the state.
When Pharmabiz contacted R Thanglura, president of the chemists and druggists of Mizoram, he said he is not aware of marketing of sub-standard hand sanitizers in the state.