The Kashmir Center for Social and Development Studies has demanded a thorough judicial probe into the scandal involving supply of spurious drugs to the government hospitals in Kashmir which has far reaching consequences on the health of the entire populace.
In a meeting chaired by KCSDS chairperson Prof. Hameda Nayeem, the members expressed their great anguish and concern over the matter and demanded exemplary punishment for all those involved in the scandal.
“There has been well founded and deep suspicion for quite some time now among the people here that they are being fed with spurious drugs which prove more harmful to patients than no drugs at all.” KCDS said in a statement to KNS, adding, “ This revelation is only a tip of the iceberg and last year’s high mortality of infants in GB Pant Hospital forms a link in the same chain which has been buried with impunity.”
In view of this linkage, the center demands a thorough re-investigation of infant deaths in GB Pant Hospital and if proved, it amounts to “culpable homicide”.
The members observed that the government has failed to put in place a surveillance mechanism to check the supply of the spurious drugs besides monitoring the quality of drugs available in government hospitals and with private pharmacies. The government has also failed to furnish a separate list of genuine and spurious drugs available in the hospitals and private pharmacies for the benefit of the patients.
KCSDS also take strong note of the faulty drug procurement procedure in the state that altogether ignores or dilutes the important criteria for pre-qualification/ shortlisting of companies and testing of drugs in consonance with the medically approved standard practices in this matter.
It is criminal negligence on the part of the government that a state which has the highest consumption of drugs lacks the facility of Quality Control Analytical Laboratory for testing the genuineness of drugs.
The KCSDS wonders why the doctors community has not been vigilant enough to check the menace of spurious drugs while they have been administering these medicines to the patients in the hospitals.
Since the government instituted enquiries and investigations have miserably failed so far to address the various issues surfacing from time to time and bring the culprits to justice, a judicial probe is highly desirable to unearth all its facets and the nexus of interests of various subsidiary agencies. The political patrons, in particular, responsible for patronizing scandalous conduct of officials and agencies must be thoroughly exposed and brought to book .The various officials guilty of dereliction of duty in ensuring supply of quality drugs to patients must be identified and punished in an exemplary manner.
In fact, Hon’ble High Court should have taken a suo moto notice of the matter and ordered a thorough enquiry to unearth the invisible nexus of different players keeping in view the seriousness of the issue.
The KCSDS has decided to hold a series of seminars and round table discussions on various aspects of Drug policy that in turn will ensure procurement and supply of quality drugs in the hospitals as well as private pharmacies.