New Delhi, March 15,2014:
The Supreme Court on Friday issued notices to the Centre and Ranbaxy Laboratories on a petition seeking cancellation of the company’s licence and a CBI probe against it for allegedly supplying adulterated drugs in the country.

While agreeing to examine the allegations, a Bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam refused to pass any interim order for restraining the company from manufacturing drugs.

“The matter requires consideration and we will examine it, but we cannot grant any interim stay,” the Bench said.

The court passed the order on a PIL (public interest litigation) filed by advocate ML Sharma seeking action against the company for allegedly supplying substandard and adulterated drugs.

In his PIL, Sharma alleged that “Ranbaxy was fined $500 million by the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) for making and selling adulterated drugs”.

The PIL also sought sealing of all its manufacturing units here, including those in Paonta Sahib in Himachal Pradesh and Dewas in Madhya Pradesh.

He alleged that despite Ranbaxy pleading guilty to supplying adulterated drugs in the US and it being fined such a huge amount, the Centre has not taken any action to prohibit or ban the drugs made by the company.

He also sought action against the regulator, Central Drug Standards Control Organisation, for permitting Ranbaxy to sell drugs in India, especially in the wake of the results of the US FDA probe against the company.

Company’s response

Commenting on the developments, the company’s spokesperson said: “Ranbaxy has not yet received any notice from the Supreme Court of India to file a reply.

“If the company receives a notice, it will respond appropriately to the observations.

“Ranbaxy is compliant with all the requirements under Indian law and maintains that all the drugs sold by the company in the Indian market are safe and effective.”