Centre approved medicines to treat Covid patients: Supreme Court
The Supreme Court on Wednesday said there was an approval by the Central government on use of Remdesivir and Fabiparivir as medicines to treat Covid-19
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday said there was an approval by the Central government on use of Remdesivir and Fabiparivir as medicines to treat Covid-19. The top court was hearing a plea seeking registration of an FIR by the CBI against ten Indian pharmaceutical firms for manufacturing and selling these two medicines for treating Covid-19 patients allegedly without valid licences.
Remdesivir and Favipiravir are antiviral drugs and their efficacy in treating COVID-19 patients have been a matter of debate among medical experts. A bench comprising Chief Justice S A Bobde and Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian referred to the New Drugs and Clinical Trials Rules, 2018 and said these medicines have been permitted by the government for using in treatment of novel coronavirus patients.
"You have not noticed this rule (New Drugs and Clinical Trials Rules) and filed this petition. We are adjourning this matter, you see the rules and then come back," the bench told lawyer M Sharma who has filed the PIL.
Adjourning the hearing by two weeks, the bench said, "There is approval by the Government of India for Remdesivir and Fabiparivir". Seeking CBI probe, Sharma had filed the PIL alleging that these two medicines have been wrongly manufactured and sold for treating COVID-19 patients without any valid licences from the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation.
"That respondent no.3 to 10 are Indian pharmaceutical company who have signed partnership agreements with foreign companies that are Gilead Science Inc -USA and Fujifilm Japan, to manufacture and sale impugned drug, Remdesivir and Avagin (Favipiravir) in India.
Without having a licence, the are manufacturing and selling impugned drugs as a medicine for corona in India," the PIL alleged. More than 300 doctors have died in hospitals where these two medicines have been supplied and it amounted to "exploitation of public" due to the fear of death. Remdesivir was introduced by Gilead Science Inc.