Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Friday took to Twitter and said that all the manufacturing activities of Marion Biotech at Noida unit have been stopped Thursday night. Mandaviya also informed that the investigation against the Noida-based drugmaker is underway.
“Following inspection by @CDSCO_INDIA_INF team in view of reports of contamination in cough syrup Dok1 Max, all manufacturing activities of Marion Biotech at NOIDA unit have been stopped yesterday night, while further investigation is ongoing,” Mandaviya tweeted on Friday.
Earlier this week, Uzbekistan’s Health Ministry stated that 18 children have died after consuming Doc-1 Max syrup which is manufactured by Marion Biotech.
“To date, 18 out of 21 children with acute respiratory disease have died as a result of taking the Doc-1 Max syrup. It was found that the deceased children, before admission to hospital treatment, took this drug at home for 2-7 days 3-4 times a day, 2.5-5 ml, which exceeds the standard dose of the drug for children,” the Health Ministry of Uzbekistan said in a release.
According to the country’s Health Ministry, the inspected series of Doc-1 Max syrup contained ethylene glycol.
In India, central and state drug control teams are investigating the claim by Uzbekistan. Additionally, samples have been sent to the Regional Drug Testing Laboratory (RDTL) in Chandigarh.
The Indian authorities are in touch with their Uzbekistan counterparts over the death of 18 children. On Thursday, the Ministry of External Affairs stated that the domestic pharmaceutical industry remains a reliable supplier of medicines across the world.
Addressing a regular media briefing, external affairs ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi described the deaths of the 18 children in Uzbekistan as “unfortunate”.
“Uzbek authorities have not formally taken up the matter with us. Nevertheless, our embassy has contacted the Uzbek side and is seeking further details of their own investigation,” he added.
Reportedly, Marion Biotech was granted a license by the Drugs Controller of Uttar Pradesh for manufacturing Dok-1 Max syrup and tablets for export.
Earlier this year, around 70 children died in Gambia allegedly after consuming cough syrup made by Maiden Pharmaceuticals.