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Pune: Hospital medical assistant arrested for selling remdesivir at five times the price

Probe has revealed that Sawant was trying to sell each vial at Rs 7,000, as against the Rs 1,100-1,400 price range at which the government has capped the medicine price.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
Updated: April 14, 2021 8:04:09 pm
Remdesevir

Continuing their action against black-marketing of remdesivir injections, the Crime Branch of Pune City Police has arrested a medical assistant working at a hospital for allegedly selling the medicine vials at five times the price.

The action comes two days after a joint action in which the Pune City Police Crime Branch and Food and Drugs Administration had booked a staffer from a Covid care centre and a nurse from a private hospital for the alleged illegal sale of remdesivir injection at a higher price.

In the latest action conducted on Tuesday, unit 3 of Pune City Police’s Crime Branch, led by Senior Inspector Anil Shewale, received a tip-off that a person was selling remdesivir injections outside a hospital in Bhavani Peth area. Assistant Inspector Shrishail Chiwadshetty planned the action, in which a decoy customer was sent to the location and a person who was trying to sell vials of remdesivir illegally was detained. The person, identified as Shivaji Sawant (24), was placed under arrest and two vials of remdesivir were recovered from his possession.

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Probe has revealed that Sawant was trying to sell each vial at Rs 7,000, as against the Rs 1,100-1,400 price range at which the government has capped the medicine price.

Pune Police have formed several teams to put a check on black-marketing and illegal sale of the medicine, which is in high demand due to a sharp spike in Covid cases across Maharashtra, especially Pune.

Assistant Inspector Chiwadshetty said, “The arrested person works as a medical assistant at a hospital which has a Covid ward. The family of a patient was asked by the doctor to get six vials of the injection, but the suspect asked them to get them eight. He was illegally trying to sell the remaining two at a price which was at least five times the maximum allowed price.”

Pune Police Commissioner Amitabh Gupta said, “We have formed 10 teams to curb black-marketing and illegal sale of remdesivir. We urge people to come forward and report to us if they come to know of illegal sale and black marketing of this essential medicine.”

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