Noida firm stops syrup blamed for 11 kid deaths

NEW DELHI: The manufacturing of Marion Biotech's Dok-1 Max cough syrup has stopped "for now", the company's legal representative said on Thursday as the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) began a probe in connection with the deaths of 18 children in Uzbekistan allegedly linked to it.

The pharma company has been under the scanner after the Uzbekistan health ministry alleged that children died after consuming Dok-1 Max.

A team of Central agencies and the Uttar Pradesh drug department carried out an inspection at the Noida office of a pharmaceutical firm.

Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya said that the samples of the cough syrup have been taken from the manufacturing premises in Noida and sent to the Regional Drugs Testing Laboratory in Chandigarh for testing.

Mr Mandaviya said further action will be taken based on the inspection of the pharma company.

The CDSCO, he said, has been in regular contact with the national drug regulator of Uzbekistan regarding the matter since December 27.

According to the ministry, ethylene glycol was found in a batch of syrup during laboratory tests. Sources said the Drugs Controller General of India has sought more information regarding the incident from the Uzbek regulator.

Hasan Harris, legal representative of Marion Biotech, said the governments of both countries are looking into the matter and inquiring. "There is no problem from our end. Once the government report comes, we will look into it. For now the manufacturing has stopped," he said.

The company does not sell the cough syrup in India and its only export has been to Uzbekistan, a UP government official said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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