CAIT: E-pharmacies exploit legal loopholes, making chemists unrivaled.

Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), an association of traders, has accused e-pharmacies of misusing legal loopholes to “distribute drugs without a prescription and without a registered pharmacist”. CAIT national president BC Bhartiya and secretary general Praveen Khandelwal, in a joint statement, said the government should only allow e-pharmacies that do not allow anyone to set up a web portal to act as a drug owner and intermediary between e-pharmacies. . Pharmacy and consumer.

Khandelwal says e-pharmacies often hide behind mediating safety provisions, such as section 79 of the Information Technology Act, 2000, if consumers receive adulterated or counterfeit drugs. ‚ÄúThis is similar to how e-commerce marketplaces avoid liability by claiming intermediary protection in e-commerce. In the case of e-pharmacy, the consequences are not only more serious, but in most cases irreversible, “he said, urging the government to ban such e-pharmacy marketplaces.

To avoid e-pharmacies as intermediaries, CAIT has also suggested amendments to the Draft Drugs and Cosmetics Amendment Rules, 2018. The association sought to revise the definition of ‘e-pharmacy sales’ to ensure the distribution or sale of e-pharmacy. , Storing and displaying or offering for sale while others are prohibited Khandelwal and Bharatiya have suggested a minimum fine of Rs 1 lakh for violating the rules by such e-pharmacies, which could be extended to Rs 10 lakh.

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“The CAIT has expressed frustration over the failure of the Ministry of Health to take any action against e-pharmacies who have been violating the rules and regulations of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act even after writing to the Ministry several times in the past,” the association said in a statement. The chemist has made trade competitive by not following the rules set by e-pharmacies, he added.

The association also wrote a letter to the government in this regard last year. “It is important to note that it is illegal to sell prescription drugs and drugs online. In a letter to Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal in March 2021, CAIT stated that legal action under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, does not allow home delivery of prescription drugs that require a prescription “original”. Several companies like PharmaG, Tata 1MG, NetMeds etc. work in the e-pharmacy division.

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