Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Bangladesh High Court orders 28 drugmakers to stop producing antibiotics, steroids and cancer drugs 

  • Staff Correspondent, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2017-02-27 16:02:29 BdST


The High Court has given three days to 28 Bangladeshi pharmaceutical companies to stop production and marketing of antibiotics, steroids and cancer drugs.

The order came on Monday after initial hearing of petition filed by a rights body 'Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh'.

Petitioner's counsel Munjil Morshed told bdnews24.com that the court has also instructed concerned authorities to file an update on the order's implementation within two weeks.

Secretaries to the ministries of health and industry, chiefs of the health directorate and consumer rights protection directorate, president of Bangladesh Association of Pharmaceutical Industries, director general of elite police unit the Rapid Action Battalion and the inspector general of police have been ordered to file the update.

"These 28 companies have been manufacturing antibiotics, steroids and cancer drugs without following the World Health Organization's Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), posing a major risk to public health," said counsel Morshed.

The GMP ensures that medicinal products are consistently produced and controlled to the quality standards appropriate to their intended use and as required by the product specification.

"Our drug law recognises the guidelines, so manufacturing and marketing of drugs violating it is not possible," said Morshed.

The petition cited Sections of 15 and 17 of the 1982 Drug Control Ordinance.

Section 15 
(1) Every manufacturer of drugs shall follow the good practices in the manufacture and quality contol of drugs recommended by the World Health Organisation.
(2) If any manufacturer does not follow such good practices his manufactured licence may be cancelled or suspended.
Section 17
Whoever manufactures [stocks or sells] any sub-standard drug shall be punishable with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years, or with fine which may extend to one lakh (100,000) Taka, or with both.

"In its report, a specialist panel, formed upon the permission of the Speaker, recommended stopping these companies from producing antibiotics, steroids and cancer drugs. The petition has been filed as the authorities had not taken any steps on it," said counsel Morshed.

The 28 companies

Amico Pharma, Aztec Pharmaceuticals, Bengal Techno Pharma Ltd, Benham Pharmaceuticals, Central Pharmaceuticals, Descent Pharma, Dr. Tims Pharmaceuticals, Globex Pharmaceuticals, Greenland Pharmaceuticals, Inova Pharmaceuticals, Max Drugs Ltd, Medi Mate Laboratories, Modern Pharmaceuticals, Mystic Pharmaceuticals, National Laboratories, Organic Health Care Ltd, Wester Pharma, Premier Pharmaceuticals, Prime Pharmaceuticals, Seema Pharmaceuticals, White Horse Pharmaceuticals, Momtaz Pharmaceuticals, Unique Pharmaceuticals, United Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals, FNF Pharmaceuticals, Techo Drugs Ltd's Units 1,2 and 3.