Online pharmacies in India are violating Indian laws with impunity and Indian regulatory authorities are watching helplessly. Maharashtra FDA has already approached DCGI for regulating illegal online pharmacies operating in India. The online sales of prescribed drugs in India are also under DGCA scanner. However, nothing concrete has happened so far and criminals continue to operate online pharmacies with great disregard to Indian laws.
The position has become so horrible that an urgent intervention by Indian government is need of the hour. International crackdown upon online pharmacies is already under process. Countries like Unites States and United Kingdom have already banned Indian pharmaceutical products and herbal medicines.
Considering the gravity of the situation, FDA officials earlier this week approached the Central government’s Ministry of Commerce, as well as the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI), asking them to investigate such scams and take similar action to crack down on cases of “Internet pharmacy”, as also draft a concrete policy to tackle it. In the action taken around Mumbai and Pune, amongst other spots, in March/April this year, officials seized medicines worth Rs 2 crore from across the state.
Assistant Commissioner (Drugs) at the state FDA Dr Rakesh Tirpude said, “We have written to the Centre so that they can plug loopholes and come up with a policy to curb such activities. We are state-level authorities, so we are not authorised to take action at the national level. However, the issue is not just limited to Maharashtra, and needs to be investigated across India”.