Illegal and unapproved medicine in India

In the recent times there has been a huge influx of illegal medicines in India. These medicines not only infringe on the registered patents of global pharmaceutical organizations but also, have serious issues related to the authenticity of the ingredients, thereby putting the life of patients at huge risks.

In most cases, these medicines are manufactured in countries where the law enforcement is low like Bangladesh, Nepal, few countries in the Middle-East and Africa. These are then imported into India through illegal routes and distributed across the country through the local chemists.  It has also been observed that many times, these medicines are subsequently exported to other countries primarily using China or  Hong Kong, as a route to other global markets.

These medicines are being openly sold by pharma distributors & chemists across India and needless to say they are being sold without any bill. The cost at which these medicines are sold are the fraction of the cost of the genuine molecule. While there are clear evasion of taxes (custom, local tax etc)  but  there are more serious issue, as these medicines don’t carry any approval from the drug controller in India and the ingredients are not certified for their genuinely, potency & effect on the patient. There is a huge risk to the life of the patient owing to likely adverse effect of these illegal medicines.

Since India is a poor country with very little insurance coverage for large part of population and that the fact, these illegal medicines are available at the fraction of the cost of genuine molecule, the people are being foolishly duped into use of such non complaint drugs.

It is imperative for the pharma companies and the government to crack down on such medicines and the illegal trade associated with manufacture, import, distribution & promotion of such drugs.

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