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Drug shortage feared as truckers’ stir on

SOLAN: All-India truckers’ strike may cause shortage of medicines if it continues for some more days.

Drug shortage feared as truckers’ stir on


Ambika Sharma

Tribune News Service

Solan, July 24

All-India truckers’ strike may cause shortage of medicines if it continues for some more days.

The strike entered the fifth day on Tuesday and industrialists were panicky. Even small consignments of medicines, which were sent through couriers to nearby places, were hit by the strike.

Vinod Gupta, president, Baghat Drug Manufacturers Association, Solan, said drugs were transported on a daily basis and the strike had put on hold all such operations. Stockists would soon run out of stock and retailers would have inadequate medicines.

SL Singla, adviser, Himachal Drug Manufacturers Association, said the demand peaked during the rainy season when several communicable diseases were prevalent.

A shortage of medicines would be visible in the markets, if the strike continued.

He added that manufacturing had slowed down. It would take another 15 days for the manufacturing to pick up if the strike ended even now as raw materials would have to be procured from Ahmedabad, Delhi, Chennai, etc., and transportation of finished goods would take another week.

It would cause losses to manufacturers and the state’s exchequer.

Officials of more than 300 export-oriented units were also upset over the strike. With a majority of them manufacturing life-saving drugs, which require a specific temperature, storing the stock has become a cause for concern.

A plant head of a unit said they would have to halt their manufacturing operations if the strike extended beyond a week as they had limited space to stock the drugs.

The state has 625 pharmaceutical units with about 400 being in Baddi-Barotiwala-Nalagarh (BBN) alone. Every third drug sold in the country was manufactured in the state where the annual turnover was nearly Rs 40,000 crore.

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