A Public Interest Litigation petition has been filed in the Supreme Court on Wednesday against the Directors of Ranbaxy Laboratories for allegedly manufacturing and selling adulterated drugs in India.
The PIL, which comes in the wake of the Indian pharma major being fined $500 million by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) for making and selling “adulterated” drugs, was mentioned for early listing by petitioner and advocate Manoharlal Sharma before a vacation Bench of Justices Ms. Gyan Sudha Misra and Madan B. Lokur. The Bench however told counsel that the matter could be mentioned after the technical formalities were completed by the Registry.
The petitioner sought prosecution of all directors of the company and a bar on any further sale of drugs manufactured by Ranbaxy and also seizure of the entire property of the directors of the firm. He claimed that despite Ranbaxy pleading guilty to supplying adulterated drugs in the U.S. and it being fined such a huge amount, the Centre had not taken any action to prohibit or ban the company’s drugs. He also sought action against the Central Drug Standards Control Organisation for permitting Ranbaxy to sell drugs in India, especially in the wake of the results of the USFDA investigation against the company.
The petitioner sought sealing of manufacturing facilities of the company at Paonta Sahib and Devas in Himachal Pradesh. He said the petition raised serious questions about whether our government could effectively safeguard drug supply. He alleged that supply of adulterated drug was a heinous crime and it amounted to committing murder and the various facts had clearly disclosed that Ranbaxy had been supplying adulterated drug in India and other countries. He wanted the licence of the company be cancelled coupled with imposition of heavy penalty in billions of dollars to compensate cost of lives taken by the Ranbaxy medicines.