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Pt Nehru’s ‘dream project’ gasps for breath

For the pharma PSU Hindustan Antibiotics,which used to be headed by NCP chief Sharad Pawar,can no longer bank on the administration to extend help in times of need.

Written by Express News Service |
March 4, 2013 3:04:48 am

PCMC does not buy our drugs…officials demand kickbacks: HA officials

For the pharma PSU Hindustan Antibiotics,which used to be headed by NCP chief Sharad Pawar,can no longer bank on the administration to extend help in times of need.

Pawar’s MP daughter Supriya Sule is now the president of the workers’ union. Yet no help has come from the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC),where NCP has been at the helm for over a decade and is located merely a km away.

Ironically,it is this PSU that,citizens say,has placed Pimpri-Chinchwad on the world map.

Although located in close proximity,PCMC has shied away from purchasing drugs from HA. “It has preferred private parties rather than an institute of national importance,which is very sad,” said Sathyan Iyer,a retired income tax officer and an old-time resident of Pimpri-Chinchwad.

“In fact,the Supreme Court has laid down that a public sector unit should get preferential treatment in matter of tender allotment. But PCMC has clearly not bothered.”

The HA management said they had in the past tried to convince PCMC officials and politicians about the importance of HA and need to keep it going,but failed in their endeavour. “If PCMC buys drugs from us,it will certainly ease the pressure,” says HA personnel manager T Das. However,senior officials,on the condition of anonymity,alleged that in the past when approached,some PCMC medical department officials soughst kickbacks. “They want two-three tickets to Singapore and other benefits…A struggling PSU like ours cannot afford. So we kept quiet,” an official,who preferred anonymity said.

However,under the new dispensation of Municipal Commissioner Shrikar Pardeshi,there seems to be a glimmer of hope for HA. “I don’t know why,in the past,PCMC did not purchase medicines from HA. But,yes,I am ready to help out the national institute…will hold talks with HA management in this regard,” said Pardeshi.

Interestingly,Supriya Sule,when contacted,said she was not aware that PCMC does not purchase medicines from HA. “I will take up the matter after returning from Delhi,” she said.

Another MP Gajanan Babar,also said that PCMC must help HA,since it is the first penicillin unit set up in the country.

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