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Sealing of pharma unit: Fact-finding mission visits affected locality

Lahore, November 29, 2012 (PPI-OT): Shocked by arrests and sealing of a pharma unit over syrup issue, a fact-finding mission comprising members of private sector, pharmaceutical manufacturers and anti-drug campaigners Thursday visited the affected locality to gather circumstantial evidence.

The six member team, including LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar, Khawaja Shahzeb Akram, Mohammad Zakaur Rehman, Nadeem Shami and Syed Zulfiqar Hussain, had a detailed meeting with the MNA of Shahdra Town Malik Riaz in the presence of SHO Shahdra Atif Zulfiquar and area influentials besides interviewing some of the addicts.

The MNA, while assuring his full support, informed the visiting team that his last three days probe and findings were fast reaching conclusion that not only the addicts consumed spurious syrup but it too was taken in a large quantity with some additive anti-allergic tablets to get a higher level of intoxication that led to casualties.

Malik Riaz said that he had also issued necessary directions for an action against the addicts as Shahdra is a poor locality and most of the addicts are fulfilling their addiction needs through mixture of various medicines.

He, however, said that there is a need to put complete ban on the sale of medicines without proper prescription. “Had a law been there to stop unsolicited sale of medicines, the number of addicts in the society would have been much lesser.”

The team also interviewed two addicts who had been consuming the cough syrup for the last six years. What Waheed Ahmad (46) and Mohammad Aslam (42) narrated, led to the conclusion that fake and drug-mixed syrup was being sold in that locality.

Earlier, the LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar said that the entire pharma industry was in state of shock because of arrests of pharma distributors and sealing of pharma manufacturing units without any proper inquiry as arbitrary decision lead to speculation and loss of reputation of the concerned industry.

“How the damaged image would be restored which Reko Pharma had earned with fifty years of hard and honest work.” The LCCI President said that the fact-finding mission has been constituted with an objective to fix the responsibility as if the industry is doing something wrong it should be taken to task and if some other factors are behind this episode then legislation is needed to avoid repletion of such incidents.

“We have to develop a mechanism of self accountability if we want to get out of blame game once for all and in the larger interests of the country.”

For more information, contact:
Shahid Khalil
Information Department
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
11-Shahrah-e-Aiwan-e-Tijarat,
Lahore -54000, Pakistan
Tel: +9242 111 222 499
Fax: +92 42 636 8854

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