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HindustanTimes Tue,16 Sep 2014

Parties asked to include drug MRP issue in manifestoes

Raghbir Singh Brar, Hindustan Times  Faridkot:, March 09, 2014
First Published: 00:56 IST(9/3/2014) | Last Updated: 00:58 IST(9/3/2014)

While political parties are in an election mode, a group of social activists, led by Gurpreet Singh, president of Bhai Kanahaiya Cancer Roko Sewa Society here, has asked all  parties to include their demand to devise a policy, to stop pharmaceutical companies from fixing MRPs of medicines as per their whims, in their poll manifestoes.

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After sending registered letters on Thursday to all main political parties, they are now on their way to Delhi to personally hand over the demand charter to offices of parties.

“There is a wide gap between the maximum retail price (MRP) and the actual market price of many medicines leaving a lot of scope for  exploitation of the people,” Gurpreet said.  “The patients may be charged anywhere from the actual prices to up to the MRP, as allowed by law,” he added.

“We are today going to Delhi where we will visit the offices of all major parties including Congress, BJP, AAP, Third Front and others and hand them over our charter of demand that parties must include in their manifestos that the maximum retail price of all the drugs should be printed only with reasonable margin of wholesalers, chemists or retailers.,” said Kultar Singh, senior vice- president of the society.

“Some medicines are priced at 10 to 12 times higher than the sale price  in open competitive market, but due to the alleged nexus between pharmacy companies, doctors and chemists, the patients have to buy the prescriptions only and are only in a losing situation due to too much higher MRPs printed on many medicines,” claimed Gurpreet.

“It is a national issue, exploitation of patients in buying medicines should be stopped and all political parties should include it in their poll agenda,” he said.

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