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HC observes

Highest punishment be given to fake drug sellers

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Staff Reporter :
The High Court on Tuesday observed that if anyone sells fake and adulterated medicines, they should be punished for life imprisonment or death sentence.
The High Court Bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahasan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the remark while hearing on a writ petition filed seeking confiscation of fake and adulterated medicines from pharmacies across the country and destroy those.
The court also said, "Seven days imprisonment by mobile courts after finding adulterated medicines in a pharmacy is a very short conviction. So if adulterated medicines are found in a pharmacy for the second time, then those involved should be sued under the Special Powers Act, where the conviction is life imprisonment or death sentence." Meanwhile the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) on Tuesday submitted a report in the High Court saying that it has destroyed expired medicines of Tk 340.75 million of various drug companies in last three months.
The Administration has realised Tk 17.49 million as fine by conducting mobile courts for preserving expired and fake adulterated medicines by this time.
The drug administration conducted its operation against the preservation of expired and fake adulterated drugs from August 1 to October 31 this year, said the report.
Mobile courts of the drug administration visited 13 thousand 593 pharmacies and lodged 572 cases by this time and realised Tk 17.49 million as fine. At the same time, the mobile courts sealed two pharmacies for preserving expired and fake adulterated drugs.
Director General of the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA), Major General Md Mahbubur Rahman, sent the report complying with a High Court order issued on June 18 this year.
On behalf of the drug administration, Deputy Attorney General ABM Abdullah Al Mahmud Bashar submitted the report in the High Court. After holding hearing on the report, the court fixed December 12 for further order on the matter.
Barrister ABM Altaf Hossain appeared in the court on behalf of the writ petitioner, Barrister Kamruzzaman Kochi appeared for Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection, Advocate Shah Monjurul Hoque appeared for Bangladesh Association of Pharmaceutical Industries and Deputy Attorney General ABM Abdullah Al Mahmud Bashar for the State.
Advocate Shah Monjurul Hoque said, "We agree with the operation against the fake and adulterated medicines. We also want that fake drugs should be removed from the market. One of the pleas sought expired date in Bengali in the medicine packet. We showed that the expired date information is in Bengali in the packet. But they wanted it in the strip of the medicine where it is in English. We said that we will hold meeting with the factory owners so that the cent percent company write expired date in the strip of the medicine in Bengali."
ABM Abdullah Al Mahmud Bashar said, "The court asked the owners of the pharmaceutical companies to stop the practice of influencing the physicians providing various facilities through their representatives. There should be no such irregularities or wrongs."
Following a writ petition the same High Court Bench on June 18 this year directed the government to confiscate all expired medicines from pharmacies across the country and destroy those within a month.

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