Union health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has come down heavily on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), saying the United States, fearing the challenge posed by Indian drug manufacturers, is trying to impose its own will on the local pharmaceuticals' industry and India would strongly retaliate to this at international forums.
His statement came a day after FDA commissioner Margaret Hambrug said the US was not targeting Indian pharma major Ranbaxy, whose drugs were recently banned from being imported into the US , or other Indian companies, but only ensuring quality control and compliance with FDA norms. "India is exporting drugs to 212 countries, which includes many developed countries. US companies are unable to accept this fact as they are losing out on competition, thus resorting to highhandedness towards Indian pharma companies," said Azad, who was here to lay the foundation stone of the Rs 150-crore super-specialty cell of Rajindra Medical College and Hospital.
"The FDA action against Indian firms is totally unwarranted and it's an attempt to stop the India pharma industry, which has taken over many markets in the world and ended the dominance of many developed nations," Azad said.
Criticising the FDA action against Ranbaxy, the minister said: "The FDA is not doing much less than what the Indian police does. It's "policegiri" or "dadagiri". Unable to match the competition posed by Indian companies, the FDA has taken recourse to arm-twisting methods on minor issues," he said, asserting that Indian drugs matched world-quality standards and the country adhered to strict manufacturing norms. He noted his ministry had already raised the matter with the FDA.