Hyderabad: The sale of narcotic and psychotropic drugs must be colour-coded to prevent them being sold over the counter and being misused. There are 536 drugs which are to be dispensed only after a prescription by medical practitioner but these are all antibiotics.
The schedule X drugs which are narcotic drugs should also be brought under the prescription net, according to the Indian Drug Manufacturers Association. The narcotic and psychotropic substances are habit forming that need to be controlled because these products are among thehighly abused ones.
There are 15 drugs and in combinations these add up to 1,000 drugs which have to be tracked, according to a senior drug control officer in the state. While codeine and other drugs are highly abused, other drugs like meprobamate, methyl-phenidate and amphetamine are also misused but it is not aggressively reported.
The latter drugs are in demand by addicts who are used to these. They find over-the-counter sale without verification is an easy route to procure them.
A senior drug control officer said, “There is a separate entry maintained for schedule H drugs or antibiotics. The same must be done for narcotic drugs too. This will help to track their sale. The prescription will make it compulsory to cross-check with doctors.”
Drug enforcement officers say that apart from the retail chain, a lot of supply is also now being carried out from the wholesalers’ end. That also has to be stopped. A senior officer said, “Bulk purchases are made of drugs by distributors who then channelise it directly to their clients.”...