Chemists oppose entry of Reliance into e-pharmacy

Chemists oppose entry of Reliance into e-pharmacy

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. File photo

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 22

After opposing the entrance of online shopping websites like Amazon into e-pharmacy business, the Punjab Chemist Association (PCA) on Saturday opposed the entry of Reliance Industries which had announced acquisition of online pharmacy Netmeds along with its subsidiaries.

Surinder Duggal, president of the PCA, pointed out that e-pharmacies were not recognised by the laws under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act and thereby were illegal. The association had earlier shot a letter to the Prime Minister’s Office and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare objecting to Amazon’s entry in the pharmacy business and alleged that the move could have legal implications on the e-commerce platform.

It has now written to Jeff Bezoes, CEO Amazon and also to Reliance Industries in this connection. Duggal pointed that the home delivery cannot be undertaken by any online pharmacy. He said as per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act sale of certain drugs need to be accompanied by prescriptions. He said Amazon India launched its pharmacy business in Bengaluru and conducting pilot projects in other cities. He said other online retail websites were also trying to foraying in the rapidly growing e-pharmacy segment.

The association urged the government to intervene and ban online pharmacy to safeguard the interests of 8.5 lakh chemists and their dependent families nationwide.

Giving an ultimatum till September 30, the association has urged the PM to amicably resolve the issue so that the livelihood of thousands of chemists and their families do to suffer due to entrance of big online outlets. He said that if the government failed to resolve the issue, stringent action would be initiated. He said a meeting of office-bearers of the All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists would be held shortly.

‘Ban online pharmacy’

Giving an ultimatum till September 30, the association has urged the Prime Minister to amicably resolve the issue, so that the livelihood of thousands of chemists and their families does not suffer due to the entrance of big online outlets. The association urged the government to intervene and ban online pharmacy to safeguard the interests of 8.5 lakh chemists and their dependent families nationwide.

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