"Essential medicines like anti-Malaria, anti-TB, anti-Cancer, anti-HIV, anti-Diabetese should be exempted from Value Added Tax (VAT) and other taxes," All India Organization of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) president A N Mohan told reporters yesterday on the sidelines of AIOCD's fifth executive committee meeting.
He said the medicines will be cheaper by almost 30 per cent if taxes are abolished.
"Rates for certain medicines like anti-cancer are fixed abnormally high which makes them unaffordable to certain section," Mohan said.
The executive committee meeting also demanded that union government impose uniform tax on medicines.
The association has demanded that their resolutions be considered by the government while framing "pharma policy".
He said AIOCD had already succeeded in bringing about uniformity in the prices of the medicines by getting drug companies to print "MRP inclusive of all taxes" on all medicines.
The association said that some unscrupulous traders were dealing in medicines without proper license.
"Amendments should be made to Drugs and Cosmetics Act to curb such practices," he added.