| Sachchidanand P Vikrant. Picture by Ashok Sinha |
A drug inspector has taken up the cudgels against the violators of the Drug Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act, 1954, in the state.
The Drug Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act, 1954, prohibits advertisements claiming cure of 54 diseases, some of which are AIDS, heart-related, diabetes, asthma, obesity, sexual impotence and cancer. In the past year, Vikrant (40) has lodged cases against 151 individuals and 63 companies violating the provisions of this act.
Vikrant, who is now posted at Bhojpur, is the only drug inspector in the state to have worked so doggedly to bring offenders of Drug Remedies (Objectionable and Advertisement) Act 1954, to book. Among the companies and individuals against whom Vikrant has lodged cases are Mumbai-based Deemark Healthcare Pvt Ltd, Dr AK Jain’s Clinic, Lucknow, Hashmi Dawakhana and Amrohi among others.
Vikrant started his career as a drug inspector in 2004. His first posting was in Jamui, where he worked for around four-and-a-half years after which he was transferred to Patna, where he worked for around three years. Vikrant was transferred to Bhojpur in 2008. Apart from cracking cases of fake and sub-standard drugs, one of Vikrant’s major achievements is getting the Best Drug Inspector in Bihar Award from the drug controller general in 2008.
On what led him to take up the job, Vikrant said: “The main objective of the Drugs Remedies Act is to ensure that people do not resort to self-medication. If somebody goes to a doctor, who examines him and then prescribes medication, we have no issue. But people taking drugs solely on the basis of advertisements can be dangerous.” He added: “The main purpose of this act is to prevent people from self-medication in case of serious diseases.” Vikrant said as a drug inspector, he felt it was his responsibility to bring such practice into light.