Unnecessary controversy over COVID19 related drugs: MEA India
Ministry of External Affairs, India in a response to a media query, lashes out a section of Indian media for creating unnecessary controversy over COVID-19 related drugs and pharmaceuticals.
Newly appointed spokesperson, Anurag Srivastava, in a statement, said
“Like any responsible government, our first obligation is to ensure that there are adequate stocks of medicines for the requirement of our own people
The spokesperson made this statement after many Indian media houses run stories related to the shortage of HCQ (Hydroxychloroquine) which is being used by Indian doctors on COVID-19 patients.
The spokesperson further said,
In order to ensure this, some temporary steps were taken to restrict exports of a number of pharmaceutical products. In the meanwhile, a comprehensive assessment was made of possible requirements under different scenarios. After having confirmed the availability of medicines for all possible contingencies currently envisaged, these restrictions have been largely lifted.
India is a leading global player in the manufacturing of HCQ with Ipca Laboratories, Zydus Cadila, Wallace Pharmaceuticals and Cipla as top pharma companies. A derivative of chloroquine, HCQ has fewer side-effects.
Referring to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade’s lifting of restrictions on 14 drugs yesterday, the spokesperson said,
The DGFT has notified lifting restrictions on 14 drugs yesterday. With regard to paracetamol and Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), they will be kept in a licensed category and their demand position would be continuously monitored. However, the stock position could allow our companies to meet the export commitments that they had contracted.
The spokesperson also hinted that India may provide necessary drug support to the SAARC member states and the international community other than the US under contingency measures.
Given the enormity of the COVID19 pandemic, India has always maintained that the international community must display strong solidarity and cooperation. This approach also guided our evacuation of nationals of other countries. In view of the humanitarian aspects of the pandemic, it has been decided that India would licence paracetamol and HCQ in appropriate quantities to all our neighbouring countries who are dependent on our capabilities. We will also be supplying these essential drugs to some nations who have been particularly badly affected by the pandemic.
Spokesperson Srivastava also discouraged any speculation in this regard or any attempts to politicise the matter.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team