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PIL prays for CID probe into antibiotic drug scam

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A PIL in the Bombay High Court has prayed for a CID probe into an alleged antibiotic drug scam that endangered the lives of patients last month in civic hospitals here.

On August 18, patients suffered adverse drug reactions after two antibiotics were administered intravenously by doctors at a civic-run hospital, the PIL filed by activist Ketan Tirodkar submitted.

Of the 45 patients, 28 patients suffered severe reactions. Among them one Saira Shaikh died within 24 hours of the reaction and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials seized Saira’s records from a hospital, the PIL, which is expected to come up for hearing on Monday, said.

A fortnight ago, 18 children at a civic-run hospital in Bhiwandi had a similar experience. Similarly, on August 22, at Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) hospital in Ghatkopar, patients complained of chills and abdominal pain after being injected with two antibiotics.

FDA officials visited the hospital and seized seven samples, the PIL alleged.

The PIL said that the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) has formed a panel to investigate the reason behind the 28 patients being taken ill.

The inquiry panel would probe whether the drugs were stored improperly or in unsuitable storage condition, or whether syringes used were contaminated. The probe would also look into the quality of drugs and injection water as well as the method of administration of injections.

As exposed by the Lentin Commission Report way back in 1986, the drug cartel in the pharmaceutical sector has been running a parallel administration in nexus with FDA officials and politicians, the petition said.

The PIL prayed that a CID probe be ordered and a case of negligence registered against FDA officials, municipal hospitals and pharmaceutical companies.

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