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Chandigarh: After seizing 3,000 Remdesivir injections, cops struggle to find lab to check its authenticity

The Chandigarh Administration intends to use the seized stock - a case property - for treatment of Covid-19 patients in the city after its forensic examinsation to rule out any duplicity.

Written by Saurabh Prashar | Chandigarh |
Updated: April 25, 2021 9:43:03 am
An ampule of antiviral Remdesivir. (AP Photo/File)

After seizing 3,000 injections of Remdesivir, Chandigarh Police is now faced with the daunting task of deciding on a laboratory to examine the samples of the seized stock to ascertain if the injections are genuine. The Chandigarh Administration intends to use the seized stock – a case property – for treatment of Covid-19 patients in the city after its forensic examination to rule out any duplicity.

The two premier laboratories – Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) and Regional Drug Testing Laboratory in the city have already expressed their inability to examine the salt that form Remdesivir medicine.

Considering the shortage of the drug that is being used to treat Covid-19 patients across the country, the UT Aadministration is hoping to use the seized drugs for treatment of patients admitted in the city’s hospitals for which certain legal formalities would also have to be completed before using the seized stock, which is a “case property”.

Six people including the director of pharmaceutical company Health Biotech Limited were arrested for indulging in illegal dealing of the 3,000 injections, last week. The Chandigarh Police’s Operations Cell had arrested the accused in Sector 17. Meanwhile, the injections were seized from the Baddi-based plant of the pharma company. Special Investigation Team headed by SP (Chandigarh) Ketan Bansal seized the injections and arrested the six accused on April 17.

Adviser (UT) Manoj Parida said, “We want a forensic examination of the seized injections to rule out the possibility of any duplicity. Without forensic examination, the injections cannot be used. The Chandigarh Police is already working on this front.”

A member of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the seizure said, “CFSL and RDTL have expressed their inability in examining the samples. We are in process to send the samples to some other competent laboratories in Chandigarh or will have to send it to New Delhi to get the samples examined.”

Investigating officer of UT Police, Inspector Hari Om said, “We are hopeful that very soon we would be able to find a suitable laboratory that may examine these injections and establish their authenticity. Legal options are also being explored under which a seized case property can be used for treatment of patients.”

Meanwhile the six arrested persons are in judicial custody. One of the accused, Philip Jacob of Kerala tested Covid-19 positive Wednesday. He was admitted to a government hospital.

The five other accused including Abhishek PV, KP Francis, Susheel Kumar, Parbhat Tyagi, and pharma company director Gaurav Chawla tested negative for Covid-19

Inspector Hari Om said, “The pharma company director, Parmjit Arora, has not joined the investigation yet. Legal action will be taken against him.”

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