IIT-BHU graduate eighth person to be held in spurious cancer drug racket

Seven people were arrested a day earlier; BTech graduate was running a chemist’s shop in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur

March 14, 2024 12:07 am | Updated 12:07 am IST - New Delhi

Delhi Police Crime Branch busted a fake cancer drug racket selling cancer and chemotherapy drugs from the Moti Nagar area in New Delhi on Tuesday.

Delhi Police Crime Branch busted a fake cancer drug racket selling cancer and chemotherapy drugs from the Moti Nagar area in New Delhi on Tuesday. | Photo Credit: ANI

The police on Wednesday arrested an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu University) for his alleged involvement in the fake drug racket that was busted a day earlier, taking the total number of arrests to eight in connection with the case. The accused — identified as Aditya Krishna, 23, — was arrested from Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district, the police said.

On Tuesday, seven people were arrested, including the kingpin, Neeraj Chauhan, 38. Others who were arrested have been identified as Viphil Jain, 46, Suraj Shat, 28, Parvez, 33, Komal Tiwari, 39, Abhinay Kohli, 30, and Tushar Chauhan, 28. They were allegedly involved in manufacturing and supplying spurious ‘life-saving’ cancer and chemotherapy drugs.

“Krishna, a BTech graduate from IIT-BHU, was running a chemist’s shop in Muzaffarpur and used to purchase the fake drugs from Chauhan,” a senior police officer said, adding that he has been brought to Delhi and was produced before a court.

According to the police, Mr. Neeraj, with a background in medical transcription, worked as a manager in the oncology departments of several reputed hospitals in Delhi and Gurgaon from 2006-2022. “He then started a medical tourism company in 2022 and started working with Mr. Jain “He was also running his own medical tourism company. Leveraging his medical sector expertise, he would lure people from Gulf countries, Kenya, Nepal, and Sri Lanka coming to India for cancer treatment with the promise of helping them procure cancer drugs and chemo injections at cheaper rates,” the officer said. Working with the gang for the past one and a half years, Mr. Krishna was procuring the spurious drugs through courier services and further dispatching the parcels to other distributors, the officer added.

During Tuesday’s raids across Delhi and Gurgaon, the police seized $18,000. “Jain had taken two EWS flats on rent in West Delhi’s Moti Nagar for ₹20,000 each from where they were operating. They used to fill empty vials with anti-fungal medicine worth ₹100 and sold them as ‘life-saving’ cancer drugs for ₹1 to 3 lakh per vial. During the operation that lasted for over two years, the accused sold more than 7,000 such injections,” the officer said.

An FIR has been lodged under Sections 274 (adulteration of drugs), 275 (sale of adulterated drugs), 276 (sale of drug as a different drug or preparation), 420 (cheating), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document), 120B (criminal conspiracy), and 34 (common intentions) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

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