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Three-day chemists' strike in Maharashtra called off

By Prasanna D Zore
October 15, 2012 21:06 IST
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Just a day before more than 50,000 chemists owing allegiance to Maharashtra State Chemists and Druggists Association were to go on a three-day strike, the government and the association has patched up an arrangement paving the way for the MSCDA to call off the strike.

The meeting that began Monday afternoon at 3 pm, ended at 7 pm with the state government accepting major demands of the MSCDA, said Dilip Mehta, president, Pharmaceuticals Wholesale Associuation, Mumbai.

Food and Drug Administration commissioner Mahesh Zagade also confirmed to that the MSCDA has withdrawn their three-day strike that was to begin Tuesday.

The MSCDA was represented by state president Jagannath Shinde, Madan Patil and Hukum Mehta while the government side was represented by FDA minister (state) Satej Patil, Mahesh Zagade and P R Uttarwar.

"They (the state chemists) had practical difficulties in implementing certain state government and FDA guidelines and the government has agreed to form a committee to look into the matter," Uttarwar, joint commissioner, headquarter, FDA, told

According to Uttarwar, this committee headed by joint commissioner, FDA, Greater Mumbai, K B Shende, will study the grievances of the chemists in the state and come out with a report. On the similar lines the state drug advisory committee, which will be constituted under the chairmanship of FDA commissioner Zagade, will meet at least four times in a year to look into various discrepancies that the chemists' association alleges leads to harassment from the FDA officials.

Mehta said the state government has agreed to look "positively" into the 32 cases filed by the FDA against various chemists in the state for violation of state government and FDA guidelines related to selling of drugs and medicines.

"With the state government agreeing to look into all the major demands of the MSCDA, there is no dispute at all," Uttarwar said when asked what made the MSCDA withdraw the three-day strike.

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Prasanna D Zore in Mumbai
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