|(Top) Lara, Priyanka
Mumbai, Jan. 28: The hand that chiselled and sculpted the bodies of Priyanka Chopra, Lara Dutta and Yukta Mookhey all the way to the crown has been caught on the wrong foot.
Fitness expert and dietician Anjali Mukherjee, famous for churning out beauty queens by the dozen, has been found allegedly selling spurious drugs at her Health Total clinics in Mumbai and Delhi.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday raided her main office in Andheri and confiscated large stocks of drugs without any label, manufacturing date or other data usually found on the wrappers of medicine bottles. A large number of bottles were “sealed”.
The officials also swooped on five other outlets at Colaba, Ghatkopar, Bandra, Malad and Thane. Anjali runs three clinics in Delhi as well. Preliminary treatment costs anything between Rs 15,000 and Rs 25,000.
The crackdown began after a former BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation commissioner, K. Nalinakshan, landed in Bombay Hospital with very low haemoglobin count after undergoing “weight reduction therapy”. The FDA has sent a team to the hospital to check out the drugs he had been taking and the qualifications of doctors who treated him.
The medicines sold at Anjali’s clinics have been declared illegal and associated doctors are being questioned. Among the companies supplying drugs is one Sheetal Pharmaceuticals.
“We are trying to ascertain what company this is and where it is located. We are also investigating the drugs being marketed in the name of weight reduction,” FDA chief Uttam Khobragade said. No such medicines were found in allopathy or ayurveda, he said.
“There could be a case under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act,’’ an FDA official said. The organisation is also examining the possibility of registering the case under the Drug and Magic Remedies Act once the report comes through after 15 days.
Anjali said medicines were only sold and not manufactured at her clinics. “If someone is at fault, it is the manufacturers.”
Marketing manager Sidharth Sethi said: “We have a qualified team of ayurvedic doctors… and we prescribe only ayurvedic medicines that are sourced from others.”
He said he could name at least 50 personalities in Bollywood, politics and the corporate world who come to their clinics.
The raids on Anjali’s clinics may have opened a can of worms. Sources said raids were likely to follow on other high-profile health clinics like VLCC and Dr Batra’s Positive Health Clinic. “Everybody will now be scrutinised,” Khobragade said.
Sources said some clinics dish out laxatives and hunger reduction pills in the name of weight reduction. These often lead to internal bleeding with prolonged use.