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Thursday, July 29, 2021

Delhi: 2 doctors among 10 held for manufacture, sale of fake amphotericin-B injections

Police have recovered over 3,283 fake vials of amphotericin B, remdesivir and other injections from Dr Altamas Hussain’s house in Nizamuddin West. Police said Dr Hussain is the ‘kingpin’ of the black-marketing operation.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: June 21, 2021 10:11:33 am
Delhi: 2 doctors among 10 held for manufacture, sale of fake amphotericin-BThe samples were sent to the Drug Control Department, who declared them as “doubtful quality”. The labels on the vials were from Abbott India company, who told police that the vials aren’t original and their “brand name was misused”.

The Delhi Police Crime Branch has arrested 10 persons including two doctors for allegedly manufacturing and selling fake liposomal amphotericin-B injections, used in the treatment of black fungus.

Police have recovered over 3,283 fake vials of amphotericin B, remdesivir and other injections from Dr Altamas Hussain’s house in Nizamuddin West. Police said Dr Hussain is the ‘kingpin’ of the black-marketing operation. He did his diploma in neurology from AIIMS and is the National CEO at Hyatt Health Insurance & Pharmacy.

DCP (Crime Branch) Monika Bhardwaj said the Drug Control Department received information that a man named Mayank Taluja (25) was selling black fungus injections at high prices at Jamia.

“Our team found a delivery executive, Waseem Khan (30), at Jamia Metro station and arrested him on Thursday. He told us he was sent by a man named Faizal Yaseen (21),” said DCP Bhardwaj.

Police found that Yaseen worked as a salesman at Al Khidmat Medicos. They then arrested the owner of the company, Shoaib Khan (25), and two salesmen, Yaseen and Afzal (19), for black-marketing and recovered 10 fake vials from their store. Taluja, who came to receive the payment for the sale of 10 vials, was also arrested by police.

During interrogation, the accused revealed that a medical store namely Mediiz Health Connect in Saket gives them the fake vials. Shivam Bhatia (29), the manager of the store, was arrested. Bhatia told police he supplies the injections to his sources, who sell it to patients and families in need of the injections.

The WhatsApp chats recovered from the phones of the accused showed the involvement of Dr Amir and Faizan, owner and director respectively of Mediiz Health Connect.

“Bhatia was their employee, and they both are aware that the injections are fake. Despite that, they were involved in unauthorised sale-purchase of injections,” said DCP Bhardwaj. The two were arrested on Sunday.

During further investigation, police found the injections were manufactured at Dr Hussain’s house. Police arrested his brother Aftab in connection with the case and sent a team to Deoria in UP to nab Dr Hussain. He was arrested from UP, and police recovered 3,283 vials of injections from his house in Delhi with remdesivir and amphotericin tags on them.

The samples were sent to the Drug Control Department, who declared them as “doubtful quality”. The labels on the vials were from Abbott India company, who told police that the vials aren’t original and their “brand name was misused”. The accused were also in possession of laptops and printing machines used to make labels for these vials.

Police said Hussain is a history-sheeter and was arrested this year by Ghaziabad Police in April for black marketing remdesivir injections. He is involved in five cases of cheating and forgery.

Police said Taluja was given the task to acquire more customers. He would send his number on WhatsApp groups and on social media as a vendor of the vials. Dr Hussain’s brother, Aftab, supplied the vials to Taluja and Mediiz Health Connect. These were then supplied to Al Khidmat stores or directly to customers.

All 10 accused have been booked for cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy by the Crime Branch.

Dr Hussain came out of jail on May 8 this year and began manufacturing and selling fake vials from his home. In one month, the accused sold more than 400 fake vials and was able to produce 3,293 vials.

A video of Hussain’s residence was posted online by Delhi Police Commissioner SN Shrivastava, showing several boxes with packed injections and labels inside rooms and in his office.

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