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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Remdesivir black marketing: Accused posed as distributors, relatives of patients, say police

A total of 81 Remdesivir injections have been recovered from their possession, Delhi Police said.

Written by Mahender Singh Manral | New Delhi |
Updated: April 25, 2021 2:05:21 pm
An ampule of antiviral Remdesivir. (AP Photo/File)

Days after Delhi Police arrested four in connection with alleged black marketing of Remdesivir, a drug used to treat Covid-19 patients, a probe by the Crime Branch revealed that the accused had allegedly posed as distributors and relatives of Covid patients to procure the injections and later sell them at a higher price.

DCP (Crime Branch) Monika Bhardwaj said the arrested men have been identified as Talwinder Singh, Jitender Kumar, Mohammed Shoaib and Mohan Jha.

“A total of 81 injections have been recovered from their possession. We came to know that there is a chain of persons involved in this syndicate of illegal hoarding and supplying of drugs for treatment of COVID-19 patients,” she claimed.

Police said Talwinder works as a supply agent for surgical equipment, while Mohan and Shoaib were involved in the supply of masks and surgical equipment to one Delhi-based hospital and medical shops. And Jitender runs a courier company based in Chandni Chowk.

“In one of the modules run by Talwinder and Jitender, it was revealed after their arrest that they had made a WhatsApp group where they added local chemists and asked them to give them medicine after posing as distributors. After stocking, they started selling at a cost between Rs 25,000 and Rs 40,000 and circulated their numbers on social media,” an officer
said.

Explaining the modus operandi of the second module run by Shoaib and Mohan, police said they had circulated emergency messages on social media after posing as relatives of Covid patients. “They called people and asked them to provide vials of Remdesivir injections to them. They had even bought it at a higher price and they later sold it at a higher price still” the officer added.

Bhardwaj said several teams of the crime branch were deployed with the specific task to identify and crackdown on such interstate gangs.

“Teams are conducting raids in Punjab to nab the co-accused persons and to recover more vials. During questioning, Talwinder told the police that he was black marketing the injection at a higher price as the demand of the injection was high. “Talwinder used to hoard the injections in big quantities and supply them as per demand. They supplied the injection across states through one courier company based at Chandni Chowk. Jitender managed the courier service and used to charge Rs 2,000 as commission for supply of one vial,” she said.

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