Govt plans steps over negligence in Rid Pharma case

Dhaka,  Fri,  09 December 2016
Published : 29 Nov 2016, 20:46:37

Govt plans steps over negligence in Rid Pharma case

The government will take steps if anyone's negligence is found behind the acquittal of all suspects in the Rid Pharma adulterated drugs case.

Health Minister Mohammad Nasim said on Tuesday after the court acquitted all five, including the drug company's owner and two directors, of the charges against them the previous day, reports bdnews24.com.

"It's out of the question to spare any government official if his negligence caused the acquittals." he told the media.

The Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) filed the case in 2009 following the deaths of at least 28 children across the country after they had consumed Paracetamol syrup made by the Brahmanbarhia-based drug manufacturer.

In its verdict, delivered on Monday, the Dhaka Drug Court observed that the prosecution had failed to prove the charges due to the 'inability and inefficiency' of the investigator.

DGDA Assistant Director Shafiqul Islam filed the case and was in charge of the investigation.

“ … Shafiqul Islam did not follow proper procedure in filing the seizure list and results from the chemical tests,” the court said. “The fact that he did not take the necessary steps for filing the case shows his inability and inefficiency.”    

On Tuesday, Minister Nasim held a meeting with DGDA officials at his office.

He said after the meeting that the ministry's secretary will review the investigation report. "Steps will be definitely initiated if any drug administration official is found guilty."

The case details suggest the children died due to the presence of poisonous elements in Paracetamol manufactured by Rid Pharmaceuticals.

But investigator Islam in the chargesheet given to the court said chemicals tests could not trace the presence of the poisonous Diethylene glycol in the drug and that the paracetamol was simply substandard.

Minister Nasim said the government wanted to ensure justice for the victims. "Someone has definitely done something wrong or else how is it that 22 children died?" –RH
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