FIR Against Snapdeal For Selling Prescription Drugs Online
Maharashtra’s Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) said it has ordered filing of FIR against e-commerce major Snapdeal.com’s CEO Kunal Bahl and directors of the company in a case related to alleged online sale of medicines, including prescription drugs.
The FDA had on April 16 and 20 raided Snapdeal’s premises in Mumbai and the company had responded by saying it would stop the online sale of prescription drugs. However, a Panvel resident and an FDA official in the last fortnight ordered prescription drugs such as sildenafil citrate (the generic name for anti-impotency pills Viagra) and emergency contraception pills respectively and received the products at their addresses.
Senior police inspector Bajirao Bhosale told TOI, “A Panvel resident identified as Amrut Bhagat had placed an order with Snapdeal to expose the illegal sale of drugs. As he got the delivery of the drugs without doctor’s prescription, he lodged a complaint with the FDA.” The Maharashtra FDA at a press conference held on Friday said that it had asked Bhagat to make the purchase and followed it up with their own official ordering contraceptive pills.
An FIR has been registeed against the director of Snapdeal’s CEO Kunal Bahl and other five companies for violation of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Drug and Magic Remedies Objectionable Advertisement Act, 1954,” said Bhonsale.
FDA commissioner Dr Harshdeep Kamble told TOI, “The main issue is that prescription drugs cannot be sold online. Moreover, where are the checks and balances to ensure that these drugs are indeed safe and not spurious copies of the original. What if a patient orders sleeping pills and takes an extra dose, who should be held responsible?” said Dr Kamble. He said that the website seemed to promote self-prescription which is dangerous and could be aiding addiction.”
The Maharashtra FDA has written to the union government about the need for an uniform action against companies that carry out online sale of medicines. “There are so many companies that sell drugs and medicines. They are specifically exhibiting and selling medicines without a prescription. This has to stop,” he added.
The FIR names Snapdeal’s other directors as well as companies M/s Jaspar Infotech Pvt Ltd, Mittal Pharma, Rishabh enterprises, Horizon Medical and Giriraj Pharma.