AMRITSAR: Over 11,000 tablets stored inside the Swami Vivekananda Drug De-addiction Centre were stolen after unidentified persons entered the place with covered faces on Sunday.
As per the CCTV footage from the opioid substitution therapy (OST) at the centre where the tablets were stored, tall and stout men with covered faces barged into the OST at around 4: 30 pm on Sunday.
As per the officials at the hospital, the accused stole more than 11,000 tablets (2 mg) of Buprenorphine and around 250 tablets (0.4mg) of Buprenorphine. Officials claimed that the estimated cost of the stolen medicine was around Rs 4 lakh.
“Nowadays, as per the new guidelines laid by the state government, there is restriction on prescription of Buprenorphine, which is also a very expensive drug used against opioid, including heroin,” an official said.
Talking to HT, Dr Rajiv Arora, assistant professor, psychiatric department, who is in-charge of the centre in absence of Dr PD Garg, said, “This type of act can only be done by a regular patient who actually knew in which cupboards the medicines are kept. The accused have not even tried fetching any other drawer or cupboard. They directly broke the lock of the cupboard where this drug was kept. That makes it evident that they are not new to this OST centre.”
Adding further, Dr Arora said, “Footage has been handed over to the police and a case has been registered. This drug is very costly as one strip of the drug costs rs 300 (one tablet is for rs 35-40). As there is restriction of prescribing this drug regularly to the patients (it can be given only once a week), the thieves would have stolen it to sell this drug for higher price and earn money.”
The doctor also said the quantity which has been stolen was not less than `4 lakh. “But we are sure the police will soon catch them as the CCTV footage is quite clear,” he added.
Notably, they entered after breaking a door of the room where these medicines were stored.
A case has been registered at the local Majitha Road police station.