The Group of Ministers (GoM), headed by Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, to formulate a comprehensive pharmaceutical policy aimed at making essential drugs more affordable to the common man, on Monday, met leading lights of the pharmaceutical industry to elicit their views on the issue.

The GoM is mainly examining the issues related to regulating prices of 348 drugs. Pharmaceutical representatives, including Zydus Cadila Chairman and Managing Director Pankaj R. Patel, and Dr. Reddy's Managing Director and COO Satish Reddy, presented their views to the GoM on the new policy.

The Organisation of Pharmaceutical Producers of India (OPPI) President, Ranjit Shahani, said the discussions were good. “We presented a patient-centric presentation,” he said. Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma, who is part of the GoM, said the grouping would meet again on Friday. “There could be a meeting on Friday once again as a large number of stakeholders need to be consulted on the issue. After all the inputs are taken, then the GoM will deliberate,” he told reporters.

“We have not started discussions on the basic issues because we are just giving opportunity to others. Then probably, we will have to sit again,” Mr. Pawar said.

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