Cancer of callousness grips drug control in Odisha

Sudhansu Das, proprietor of JBSL, managed to market the drug for two years without anyone knowing of it.

Published: 25th September 2016 08:22 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th September 2016 08:22 AM   |  A+A-

BHUBANESWAR:A government investigation into the anti-cancer drug scam has revealed that the accused oncologist couple were the only doctors who prescribed the high-priced drugs allegedly manufactured by JBSL Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd to patients as well as the Odisha State Medicine Corporation Ltd.

The drugs were costlier than those manufactured by Ranbaxy, Pfizer, Lupin and Sun Pharma even though they were of the same composition but the Drug Control Administration of the Health and Family Welfare Department had no clue about it. Meanwhile, the Orissa High Court on Friday directed the director, Vigilance to submit the chemical analysis of drugs prescribed by the couple.

Though drug manufacture and sale in the state are supposed to be monitored by DCA, Sudhansu Das, proprietor of JBSL, managed to market the drug for two years without anyone knowing of it.

Cancer.jpgVigilance sleuths had conducted raids at six places in Cuttack, including the houses of senior doctor couple—Dr Surendranath Senapati and wife Dr Diptirani Samanta.  “JBSL claimed to have units in Punjab’s Mohali and Himachal’s Solan districts, but investigations revealed that the units didn’t exist. Both Punjab and Himachal hadn’t issued any licence to JBSL,” DG-Vigilance Dr RP Sharma said.

The anti-cancer drug scam took advantage of Odisha State Treatment Fund and Biju Krushak Kalyan Yojana schemes of the state during December 2013-2015 when the drugs were available at authorised medicine stores. Patients could procure the medicines with a prescription and get the costs reimbursed under the two schemes. In many cases, the high price of the drugs meant that patients exhausted their treatment cost limit quickly as they were made to buy JBSL branded drugs.

In the two years, the state exchequer is estimated to have suffered a loss of Rs 26.75 lakh because of prescription of JBSL drugs.

Stay up to date on all the latest The Sunday Standard news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp