The government canceled the licenses of 18 pharma companies for manufacturing of spurious medicines following an inspection by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) on 76 companies across 20 stores.
The Indian Government took strict action against 70 companies in Himachal Pradesh and 45 in Uttarakhand and 23 in Madhya Pradesh during the government crackdown on companies manufacturing spurious medicines.
The crackdown comes against the backdrop of the government seeking to tighten the noose on e – pharmacies for conducting business in alleged violation of norms. A bunch of e- pharmacies, including Netmeds, Tata 1 mg, and PharmEasy, were served show cause notices by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI).
In the month of February, an Ahmedabad-based pharmaceutical company Zydus Lifesciences is recalling over 55,00 bottles of generic medication in the US market due to the failed impurities specifications.
Three senior employees of Marion Biotech were arrested by Noida police after an FIR was lodged against them on charges of manufacturing and sale adulterated drugs which were harmful.
Marion Biotech had come under the scanner in December 2022, over reports of children’s death in Uzbekistan after which India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), initiated a probe into the matter and found 22 out of 36 samples not of standard quality.
Officials said a drive was launched to investigate the manufacturing of Not Of Standard Quality (NSQ) drugs or spurious quality drugs after identifying 203 pharmaceutical companies.
“Licenses of 18 pharma companies have been canceled for manufacturing spurious and adulterated drugs and violating GMP (good manufacturing practice)… Besides, 26 firms have been given show-cause notices,” official sources said.
The states where inspections were carried out include Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Delhi, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
The majority of the companies are from Himachal Pradesh, followed by those in Uttarakhand and Madhya Pradesh, officials said. Officials said this was the first drive, and they will continue inspecting companies not following good manufacturing practices.
The crackdown, the report said, is a part of the government’s effort to curb the menace of spurious medicines in India and abroad. The Drugs Controller General of India had conducted inspections on 76 pharmaceutical companies, it said.
It also stated a Chennai-based pharmaceutical company had to suspend production of a line of eye drops after US health authorities said they could be contaminated with a drug-resistant bacteria that have been linked to reports of permanent vision loss and one death in February.
EzriCare Artificial Tears eye drops, manufactured by Global Pharma Healthcare, were apparently linked to cases of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which affected at least 55 people in the US, it mentioned.
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