Prosecute sellers under Special Powers Act: HC

Staff Correspondent | Published at 11:51pm on November 19, 2019

The High Court Division on Tuesday directed the government to prosecute persons and companies under the Special Powers Act 1974 for marketing and producing of adulterated medicines.

The court said it was not enough to sentence seven days in jail by a mobile court for the offence of marketing and producing adulterated medicines.

‘Such offenders should be tried under the Special Powers Act 1974 which prescribes life term jail as maximum punishment, said the bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahasan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader while hearing a public interest litigation writ petition on the issue. 

The bench said some doctors were prescribing substandard medicines for taking commission from drug producers. 

The bench asked the government to ensure mentioning the names and expiry dates of medicines clearly in Bangla on their strips by December 12.

The Department of Drug Administration in a report submitted to the High Court Division said it had damaged expired medicines worth Tk 34.7 crore and realised fines of Tk 1.75 crore from those who were involved in selling and storing adulterated and expired medicines.

It said 572 cases were filed through mobile courts across the county in the past two months.

Supreme Court lawyer Mahfuzur Rahman Milon filed the writ petition over the issue.

On June 18, the High Court directed the government to confiscate all expired medicines from pharmacies across the country, destroy them, and taking legal action against those involved in storing, supplying and selling expired medicines.