The next time you buy medicines, double-check the maximum retail price (MRP) printed on the package. In another instance of price inflation on packages from the same manufacturing batch, the MRP on two packages of Ganolanic, a common antibiotic used for treatment of respiratory infection, purchased from a chemist at Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, showed a significant difference.
A patient, Priti Budhiraja, purchased three strips of the same batch with the same manufacturing and expiry dates; while two had MRP of Rs. 141.50 printed on them, while the third bore Rs. 210. The patient was initially made to pay according to the higher price, that is, Rs. 630 minus the 15% usual discount.
When Budhiaraja noticed the difference, the chemist prepared a formal invoice as per the lower price; but by then Budhiraja had made up his mind to complain, which he did later.
The medicine is manufactured by Chandigarh-based Gaenr Biotec and was sold by Shiv Medical Store on the GMCH-32 campus. Sourabh Gupta, owner of Shiv Medical Store, said they sold medicines as received from the manufacturer.
"We have sold each strip as per Rs. 141.50. We even issued a bill," said Gupta. But Amit Shur, proprietor of Gaenr Biotec, said the price had been reduced after the new Drug Price Control Order of the government.
On how there was a difference in price within the same batch, he did not elaborate: "Some of the strips bearing the old price might have remained in the market."
The price uploaded on the website of GMCH-32 still lists it at Rs. 210.
The patient, meanwhile, has given a complaint to GMCH additional director (administration) alleging that the chemist charged him the higher price. Dr Atul Sachdev, director-principal of the institute, said he would look into the matter.