ISLAMABAD                 -             Citizens on Sunday demanded of the quarters concerned to start massive operation against open sale of smuggled and counterfeit drugs at medical stores in different sectors of federal capital.

According to them, the ongoing operation of bodies concerned was limited to few sectors and asked them to expand the scope of their drive against culprits who were playing with the lives of innocent people.

Kareem Khalid, a citizen claimed that there was open sale of counterfeit medicines at I-10 sector at various medical stores but no one is here to take action against them. He said that the business of counterfeit medicines was running in an organized manner.

He said that action should also be taken against owners of some medical stores who were involved in unauthorized increase in prices of medicines.

Another citizen, Khalid Parvaiz complained that some illegal pharmaceutical companies had started supply of unauthorized medicines to medical stores at sectors including G-11, G-12 and G-13 taking advantage of limited visits of drug inspectors.

He suggested regular surprise visits of drug inspectors to these sectors to monitor the situation and stop such illegal business. He said that action should also be taken against sale of smuggled medicines in these sectors.

When contacted, an official from Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) said that the authority had continued its operation in all sectors of the federal capital against unregistered and smuggled medicines.

He said that a team of Federal Drug Inspectors of DRAP raided several pharmaceutical companies and seized a stock of unregistered medicines in last few days.

He added such raids will continue in future also and the DRAP will seize smuggled medicines stock and medicines on unauthorized price increase. He said that Special Assistant to Prime Minister on National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination Dr Zafar Mirza directed the DRAP teams to continue crackdown against pharmaceutical companies for unauthorized increase in the prices of their medicines and to control smuggled medicines.

He said that there was clear direction to take strict action against overpricing and start active surveillance besides seizing the medicines in case of overpricing. He said that legal action will be taken against those involved in unauthorized increase in prices of medicines in the federal capital.

He said that after reduction in prices of medicines, strict compliance of the companies will be ensured. The crackdown will continue against those companies who were not selling medicine on approved prices, he added.