The production licence of Noida-based pharmaceutical firm Marion Biotech, allegedly linked with the deaths of children in Uzbekistan, has been suspended while the results of its controversial cough syrup are awaited, an Uttar Pradesh drug official said Thursday. A team of central agencies and the Uttar Pradesh drug department had carried out an inspection at the firm’s office here on December 29 and taken six more samples for testing.
During the inspection, the company representatives could not produce documents related to the production of ‘Dok-1 max’ cough syrup, prompting the government to order halting of its production immediately, Gautam Buddh Nagar Drug Inspector Vaibhav Babbar said. ”The production licence of the firm remains suspended, as was ordered on December 29. Now the suspension order has been issued in writing to the firm on January 10 and has been acknowledged by the firm,” Babbar told PTI. On the status of the test results, the officer said the samples were taken by the central agencies and their results are yet to arrive.
Marion Biotech did not sell the cough syrup, ‘Doc-1 Max’, in India and its only export has been to Uzbekistan, Babbar had told PTI earlier and estimated that the company exported around 1 lakh syrups in 45 days.
India’s central regulatory body for pharmaceuticals and medical devices, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), has initiated a probe in connection with the death of 18 children in Uzbekistan allegedly linked to Marion Biotech.
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The health ministry of Uzbekistan has claimed that the 18 children had consumed the cough syrup.
Hasan Harris, a legal representative of Marion Biotech, had earlier said that the governments of both countries are looking into the matter. The company had stopped production of the cough syrup after the case came to light.