New Delhi: The Gautam Gambhir Foundation has been accused of non-authorised stocking, procuring and distributing Covid-19 medicine ‘Fabiflu’ in Delhi High Court by the Delhi government’s drug controller on Thursday.
The Drugs Control Department in an investigation report placed before the high court alleged that former India cricketer and BJP MP Gautam Gambhir’s ‘Gautam Gambhir Foundation’ was involved in “unauthorised purchase/procurement, stocking and distribution” of Favipiravir, a drug being used to treat Covid-19, and medical oxygen which is not permitted by the law.
“By doing so, M/S Gautam Gambhir Foundation has contravened the provisions of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 & Rules thereunder and therefore have committed an offence which is prosecutable/punishable under Section 27 (b) (iii) and 27 (d) of the said Act,” the investigation report read.
The Delhi government’s drug controller submitted that action will be taken without delay against the foundation, drug dealers as well as other such cases which would be brought to its notice, reported a news agency.
MLA Praveen Kumar has also been found guilty for similar offences under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, the court was informed.
Last week, the court had rapped the Drug Control Department for giving a clean chit to Gambhir without a proper inquiry into how his Foundation was able to procure a Covid-19 drug in bulk and asked the Drug Controller to file a better status report before it by Thursday.
The division bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh had said that its confidence was completely shaken and observed that the report is not worth the paper it is written on, while rejecting it. “If your Drug Controller is not interested in doing the job, then we will ask that he be removed and let somebody else take over. What investigation? This is trash. There is no legal basis to it,” the court had said.
On May 14, in his statement Gambhir had told the Delhi Police that the ‘Gautam Gambhir Foundation’ had organised a free medical camp at Jagriti Enclave from April 22 to May 7 to provide assistance to people suffering from Covid-19. The camp remained under the supervision and control of Dr Manish of Garg Hospital, he said in the reply.
“A total of 2,628 strips of Fabiflu were purchased from authorised vendors against prescription… given by Dr Sanjay Garg (Garg Hospital). Respective invoices were obtained by the Foundation from the Vendors for the said purchase,” Gambhir had said, adding 2,343 strips of the drug were distributed free of cost to attendants of Covid-19 patients against the prescription produced by them. He had also said that “unprecedented and desperate situations call for desperate measures and remedies”.
For now, the court has asked the drug controller to file status reports on further progress in these cases within six weeks and listed the matter for hearing on July 29.