New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday revoked ban on 344 fixed dose combination medicines (FDC medicines), which included renowned brands such as Corex cough syrup, Vicks Action 500 extra and several anti-diabetes medication, saying the decision was made in a ‘haphazard manner’.
The ban was imposed on these medicines by Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led central government on March 10, 2016.
Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw, after hearing 454 petitions filed by several pharma and healthcare majors, like Pfizer, Procter and Gamble and Cipla, challenging the government’s decision of banning the FDC medicines, said the Centre took the big decision without abiding by the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
Earlier on March 14, the court had put a stay on the government’s decision of banning the medicines. The court, while narrating its decision on Thursday, said that the proceedings followed till issuance of the notification of March 10, 2016, don’t suggest that there was any big urgency.
It also clarified that the power under section 26A, power to ban manufacturing of drugs and cosmetics in interest of public, of Drugs and Cosmetics Act can’t be exercised in public interest till a drug if found dangerous to consumers.
The pharma companies, affected by the government’s decision of banning the FDCs, claimed that the order was issued without taking the clinical data into consideration. They also described the government’s claim that the decision was taken as the safer alternatives to FDCs were available, as absurd.
The government had imposed ban on more than 300 FDC drugs on the ground claiming that they contain risk to the consumers and safer alternatives were available in the market.