It is believed that people consuming dairy products, vegetables and fruits containing the drug are hit by irreversible hormonal imbalance

The government has banned the retail sale of the controversial hormone drug Oxytocin by pharmacies to curb its misuse by dairy owners and farmers who use it boost milk production and plump up the size of vegetables and fruits. It is believed that those consuming such dairy products and vegetables and fruits are hit by irreversible hormonal imbalance.

The ban restricts the Oxytocin bulk drug manufacturers from selling it to only those with licences to make the drug formulations. The drug makers on the other hand can supply it directly only to veterinary hospitals.

Under Schedule H of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rule, 1954, the drug can be distributed on the prescription of a Registered Medical Practitioner only. Further, to avoid its bulk sale, Oxytocin injections are packed only in single unit blister packs. The alleged abundant availability of the drug through traders and use of drugs by dairy owners, in a clandestine way, has been a matter of great concern for public health, officials of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said. The State drug authorities can now also conduct raids in stores selling the drug without authorisation. Oxytocin is available not only in the licensed pharmacies but also sold off the shelves by general grocery shops in many parts of the country.