Gujarat has dispensed 1400 long pending cases under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act (PFA) in a single day through special courts setting a benchmark for the entire nation, Dr. H. G. Koshia, Commissioner, Food & Drug Control Administration (Gujarat) said today.
He was speaking at the inauguration of the 8th edition of Pharmac India 2017, one of the largest exhibitions dedicated to the pharmaceutical industry.
He said that the fast disposal resulted in nearly Rs. 1.25 crore being added to government coffers by way of paid penalties after resolution. Of the 4,800 old PFA cases in Gujarat, 3881 cases were found to be trivial mistakes after analysis.
“The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had issued an advisory to all the state Food Safety Commissioners to hasten the disposal of the cases. Nearly a year ago, there was a Supreme Court judgement on the matter. But no state had acted except Gujarat. On October 9, we had a special sitting and with the help of my government, my team and the Gujarat High Court, we dispensed 1400 cases in one single day. This is a first in the nation,” Dr. Koshia said.
He further said that the state pharmaceutical manufacturers have raised the bar of quality successfully. Compared to a national failure ratio of 2.3% currently (12% a few years back), Gujarat has a failure ratio of 1.8%. Moreover, the number of pharmaceutical manufacturing units is slated to rise as GST has unveiled a neutral playing field for the industry.
Gujarat accounts for 33% of the national pharmaceuticals market. Its contribution is expected grow and touch 40% by 2020 as the benefits of GST trickle in and a skewed tax structure is ruled out.
Speaking on the occasion, Deepnath Roy Chowdhury, National President, Indian Drug Manufacturers’ Association (IDMA) drew attention to some crucial challenges being faced by the industry despite Goods and Services Tax weaving a web of benefits. The surge in drug regulation amendments and fast introduction and changes in new laws were affecting the SMEs more adversely.
He said that apart from pricing regulations and regulatory changes, if a company wants to launch products, it has to be checked if it is within the parameters of a certified formulation of The Central Drugs Standard Control Organization. There is again a proposal on banning PET bottles and discontinuation of loan license and P2P.
“There has been also a proposal to print ex-factory prices on drugs and replace gelatin capsules with cellulose. There has been a latest notification on joint inspection of facilities. We understand that a revised draft of the Pharma Policy is being prepared. The government wants transition to meet global standards. The SME has ensured affordability of drugs. So, it is the duty of the government to support them. There can be no knee jerk reactions. The SMEs cannot be left behind. May all of us be given relief from anxiety,” said Roy Chowdhury.
Pharmaceutical exports from the country stand at Rs. 1 lakh crore. By 2025, the market is on way to touch $100 billion.
Arvind Kukrety, Deputy DCGI (Ahmedabad Zone), Government of India, present today said that India’s pharmaceutical success is neither mysterious nor magical. It is only a natural consequence of quality. Focus must always be on science, data integrity, knowing the product well, controlling the production processes regularly and having an established quality culture.
“Laws are made to change. But there is now a greater transparency and predictability. About 80% of the work now is done online. There is a lot of positivity that has come of regulations. I feel, every manufacturer should upgrade and cater to the mid-income countries of the world,” said Kukrety.
In its 8th edition, Pharmac will be powered by industry-specific conferences and seminars from November 7—9. Reverse buyer-seller meets promises to be the star attraction. Exhibitors will have an exclusive opportunity to pre-book their appointments with the giant pharmaceutical companies who have a vast national & international presence.
Pharmac India 2017 will give the right platform for the industry to explore ample opportunities. The pharmaceutical industry in Gujarat is buoyant. The exhibition is not only ideal for pharmaceutical formulation companies of Gujarat but allied pharmaceutical industries as well. IDMA ensures each year that the event grows bigger and better in keeping with the interest of its members and the industry as a whole,” said Chirag Doshi, Chairman, Pharmac Exhibition Committee.