Islamabad: PPP Senior Leader and Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator A. Rehman Malik on Tuesday on the floor of the house of Senate has proposed a stringent punishment with a heavy fine for those who are involved in manufacturing, distributing and selling of spurious medicines through the amendment in The Drugs Act, 1976.
In a question submitted in the Senate, Senator A. Rehman Malik had questioned that will the government brief the house about the names and locations of pharmaceutical companies sealed on the account of manufacturing spurious medicines in the country during the last three years. He said that he was not satisfied with the answer by the concerned ministry as the matter is of the highest public interested related to human lives. He urged the Chairman Senate to refer the matter to the committee that necessary amendments could be brought.
He stated that he has studied The Drugs Act, 1976, in-depth and during his services in FIA and had experienced difficulties in taking action against the manufacturers, distributors, and sellers of spurious medicines because of the lacunas in the law. He stated that the prosecution against the criminals involved in the spurious medicines and raids and checks against them cannot be undertaken unless prior sanction from the drug inspector. He proposed that the government should make amendments in the relevant sections of the Drugs Act, 1976 with some additions. Senator A. Rehman Malik proposed that the FIA shall be able to undertake any checking raid on the factories reported to be manufacturing spurious medicines without getting any clearance from the drug inspector. He said that any Pharmaceutical Company or Individual found involved in funding, producing and distributing spurious medicines shall be liable to be punished up to 14 years imprisonment with a fine of 50 million rupees. He said that unfortunately anti-biotics, psychotropic and other medicines which sell are banned without doctors’ prescriptions are being sold freely in the markets resultantly many young are addicted to these medicines. He questioned is there any provision in the Drug Act to deal with the sale and purchase of such medicines. He asked the government to bring all the necessary amendments into The Drug Act 1976.
On a question related to the Pakistan Television (PTV), Senator A. Rehman Malik while speaking on the floor of the house raised, Senator A. Rehman Malik said that PTV is a state television and it should give equal time to highlight the role and activities of both government and opposition but unfortunately it is not giving same time to the opposition. He said that he has observed that Ptv is completely putting aside the role and activities of the opposition parties which is discriminatory and against the basics of PTV itself. He asked the government to revisit its policy regarding Ptv and Radio Pakistan as in most of the areas of Pakistan especially far-plunged areas, only PTV is being watched and considered as an authentic source of news. He proposed that the matter should be referred to the relevant committee for further deliberation.