VISAKHAPATNAM: In yet another joint decoy operation in the port city, the drug control and vigilance personnel have arrested two persons on charges of selling Tocilizumab and Bevacizumab injections in the black market.
On credible information that two persons — Dadi Prasanna Kumar and S Ramya Krishna — were selling one Tocilizumab injection for Rs 3 lakh, a drug inspector and CI vigilance approached them posing as attendants of a patient.
Prasanna Kumar told them that they do not have Tocilizumab, but they have a similar drug Bevacizumab at Rs 75,000 per injection. Drugs Inspector Sunitha, who was posing herself as the patient’s daughter, agreed for the price. Then Ramya Krishna contacted Sunitha over phone and asked her to wait at Santhipuram.
When Prasanna Kumar and Ramya Krishna were handing over the injections to Sunita, Drugs Inspector Visakhapatnam (sales) P Kalyani and CI ( Vigilance and enforcement) Ch Tirupati Rao along with other officials seized two injections and arrested the duo for possessing the injections without a licence and in violation of the section 18(c) of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
Assistant director of drugs control K Rajitha said a chargesheet will be filed against Prasanna Kumar, who is working as a medical representative, and Ramya Krishna, who assisted him, for the illegal sale of injections at exorbitant prices. The MRP of each injection of Bevacizumab is Rs 49,000.
Drugs Inspector, Visakhapatnam (Vigilance & Intelligence) Sunitha along with CI, Vigilance and Enforcement Ch Tirupathi Rao conducted the decoy operation.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, the assistant director said since April 10, six cases were filed on the charges of selling Remdesivir injection in black market. She said there was scarcity of Tocilizumab due to limited supply as it is an imported drug. She said the accused were procuring the injections from outside the state and selling them in black market.