Delhi High Court grants bail to 4 accused of hoarding, selling COVID-19 drugs

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The Delhi High Court has granted bail to four men accused of hoarding life-saving medicines to treat COVID-19 patients and selling them at exorbitant rates during the second wave of the pandemic.

Justice Subramonium Prasad said, “The object of bail is neither punitive nor preventative and the person who has not been convicted should be held in custody pending trial only to ensure his attendance at trial; and to ensure that the evidence is not tampered with and the witnesses are not threatened”.

Granting bail to Mohan Kumar Jha, Mohd Shoiab Khan, Pushkar Chandrakant Pakhale and Aditya Gautam, who are in custody for the last seven months, Justice Prasad ordered them not to leave the Capital without prior permission of the court.

Report to police

The court also directed the four accused to report to the police station concerned thrice a week and not to tamper with the evidence or contact any witnesses.

According to the prosecution, during the second wave of COVID-19 in April, the Crime Branch Delhi Police officers received inputs of illegal hoarding and supply of life-saving medicines, including Remdesivir, to treat COVID-19 patients.

Police officers got a tip-off that two of the accused are going to supply Remdesivir injections near Batra Hospital. The two were apprehended along with the medicines and were unable to given any prescription of doctor or bills or satisfactory answers. The other accused were arrested subsequently.

The police said that empty vials, vial caps and a batch-coding machine that were apparently used for the production of the fake injection labels were recovered from one of the accused persons.

The prosecution opposed the bail plea contending that a coordinated nexus of these individuals was operating to dupe innocent and desperate people whose family members were ill and these persons exploited the gullibility of innocent persons by selling fake Remdesivir injections at exorbitant prices.

The accused sought bail on the grounds that they were lodged in judicial custody for the last seven months. A chargesheet had been filed and that no useful purpose would be served by keeping them in jail, their plea said.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2022 2:39:41 PM |

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