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Substandard drugs: SC's clean chit to Ranbaxy

Last updated on: June 25, 2013 13:23 IST

Substandard drugs: SC's clean chit to Ranbaxy

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a PIL seeking a probe against Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd for allegedly manufacturing and selling substandard medicines because of lack of evidence against the company.

A bench of justices A K Patnaik and Ranjan Gogoi, however, allowed the petitioner advocate M L Sharma to file a fresh petition if he finds some evidence against the company in support of his allegation that the company is engaged in manufacturing and selling substandard drugs.

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Image: Ranbaxy office in Mohali.
Photographs: Ajay Verma/Reuters

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Substandard drugs: SC's clean chit to Ranbaxy

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The bench said that it cannot decide the plea against the company on the basis of a judgement passed by a US court against Ranbaxy.

"Your entire argument is based on proceedings in US. We have no jurisdiction over it. Show us material that things are happening in India and it adversely affects right to life of people here," the bench observed adding, "Where is the material against Ranbaxy".

"No material has been placed to show that drugs manufactured by any unit of Ranbaxy are substandard, adulterated, spurious and that such drugs are prohibited under the law.

“In absence of such material, we cannot entertain the plea," the bench said.

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Photographs: Ali Jarekji/Reuters

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Substandard drugs: SC's clean chit to Ranbaxy

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In his PIL, Sharma had alleged that Ranbaxy was fined $500 million by the US Food and Drug Administration for making and selling ‘adulterated’ drugs.

It also sought sealing of all its manufacturing units here, including those in Paonta Sahib in Himachal Pradesh and Dewas in Madhya Pradesh.

He alleged that despite Ranbaxy pleading guilty to supplying adulterated drugs in the US and it being fined such a huge amount, the Centre has not taken any action to prohibit or ban the drugs made by the company.

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Photographs: Yorgos Karahalis/Reuters

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He also sought action against Indian drug regulator, Central Drug Standards Control Organisation, for permitting Ranbaxy to sell drugs in India, especially in the wake of the results of the USFDA probe against the company.

According to a report by Reuters, shares in Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd turned positive after earlier falling as much as 7.4 per cent after India's supreme court dismissed the PIL.


Image: A pharmacist arranges drugs in a pharmacy.
Photographs: John Kolesidis/Reuters

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