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Covid care centre staffer, private hospital nurse booked for ‘illegal sale of remdesivir at higher price’

Police have formed 10 teams to check the illegal sale of the medicine, which is in high demand due to a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases across Maharashtra, especially in Pune.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
April 11, 2021 10:59:15 pm
Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune Police, pune, COVID-19, Remdesivir, pune news, indian expressRemdesivir is an expensive drug and is in high demand for critical patients. (File Photo)

A staffer from a Covid care centre and a nurse from a private hospital were booked for the alleged illegal sale of remdesivir injection at a higher price late on Saturday, in a joint action by the Crime Branch of Pune Police and Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Police have formed 10 teams to check the illegal sale of the medicine, which is in high demand due to a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases across Maharashtra, especially in Pune.

This action comes a day after the neighbouring police jurisdiction of Pimpri-Chinchwad arrested four persons on April 9 for a similar offence.

According to police, Constable Ganesh Dhage of the Anti-Dacoity Cell of the Crime Branch received a tip-off that a person was selling vials of remdesivir injection at a higher price in Dattanagar area of Katraj.

Police said on Saturday, they laid a trap in Dattanagar area. Teams from the Crime Branch and FDA were led by Assistant Inspector Zubair Mujavar and Drug Inspector Atish Sarkale. Dhage went in as a decoy customer to a spot near a private Covid care centre in Katraj, as per the information received.

A man identified as Prithviraj Mulik (22), who works at a Covid care centre, was detained and a vial of remdesivir was recovered from him. He was later placed under arrest, police added.

Police further said Mulik told them that he managed to get hold of the remdesivir from a nurse working at a hospital in Hinjewadi, who has also been booked.

Senior Inspector Shilpa Chavan from the Crime Branch said the investigation team was working on some more clues, and more arrests were expected.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) Shrinivas Ghadge said, “We have formed 10 teams to check and take action against black marketing and illegal sale of remdesivir and other Covid-related medicine. We are working in close coordination with FDA and will also be conducting decoy operations.”

In a similar action on April 9, the Pimpri-Chinchwad police arrested four persons through a decoy operation and recovered remdesivir from them.

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