Drug inspectors raid seven medical stores in Beed


, TNN | Jun 6,2012

BEED: The crackdown in and around Beed has exposed how chemists are hand-in-glove with doctors in stocking up and illegally selling abortion pills. Twelve Food and Drug Administration (FDA) drug inspectors, who have been raiding medical stores since Sunday, nailed seven stores for illegally selling, purchasing and stocking injections and pills that can induce abortion.

Activists say the crackdowns should have been more frequent in the district with the lowest sex ratio in the state (801 girls to 1,000 boys). But the FDA maintained that lack of manpower makes it practically impossible for them to keep a constant vigil on chemist shops. Beed collector Sadanand Koche told TOI that the post of assistant commissioner (FDA) for Beed has been lying vacant for three years. “One official has been taking care of Beed, Latur and Osmanabad, and the work pressure is understandably high,” he said.

The team inspecting chemist shops found that many with dubious records were attached to maternity centres with licences to carry out abortions. For instance, Priya Medical was housed inside Sanap Hospital, where the abortion of three foetuses was traced back. The hospital owner, Dr Shivaji Sanap, was arrested and remanded to judicial custody that ends on Wednesday.

Assistant commissioner Suhas Mohite, who is heading the team of inspectors raiding shops, said it had lost its licence to carry out medical termination of pregnancy (MTP) in August 2011. “Yet, it had more than 1,000 packs of Vecredil, each containing two 100 bottles of the drug that is commonly used for second trimester abortions,” he said, adding that the FDA was taking steps to cancel its licence.

Mohite explained that the team questioned wholesalers about their main retail buyers and nabbed chemists. He said the raids would continue for a few days in neighbouring areas like Majalgaon and Shirur too. On the other six chemists, he said most tried to mask the actual sale or purchase of injections or kits, the use of which can induce labour in 20-40 hours. “The sale or purchase of such kits or injections without a bill is strictly prohibited,” he said.

A chemist from Parli, infamous for housing the hospital where foetuses were allegedly fed to dogs, was illegally stocking up abortion pills. The chemist has links with Dr Sudam Munde, who was recently found guilty of female foeticide and is on the run. Reports said that Munde had purchased Vecredil injections worth over Rs 20 lakh in 2011. FDA officials claimed that they were getting additional manpower from other states to look into the menace in Beed.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

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