Another Digital Vision Syrup Fails Retest

Chandigarh : An Ambala court has revealed that the third sample of the syrup manufactured by Digital Vision, which is suspected to be behind the death of 12 children in J&K’s Udhampur in 2020, also failed the quality test on retesting.

Earlier samples of the syrup also failed the retest and were “found to be not conforming to the manufacturer specifications”.

The Drug Control Officer, Ambala, had moved an application under Section 25 (4) of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, for retesting of the third sealed sample of the seized drug. After the application was filed, the statement of M/s Digital Vision was recorded and the sample sent to the Central Drugs Laboratory, Kolkata, for retesting on July 21, 2020.

“The report, dated March 26, 2021, has been received. The sample was retested and has been found to be substandard. A copy of the report has already been sent by the Central Drugs Laboratory to the State Drugs Controller, Haryana, and to the Drug Controller General, New Delhi,” said the order of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Saurabh Gupta, dated January 30.

Under Section 25 (4) of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, the test report in writing is signed by or under the authority of the Director of the Central Drugs Laboratory, and “such a report shall be conclusive evidence of the facts stated therein”.

According to sources, the sample of the Cold Best-PC Syrup has been found adulterated in the retest.

The report of the samples will be attached with the Food and Drug Administration Department’s complaint against Digital Vision for a trial. After the Udhampur deaths in January 2020, it was found that Cold Best-PC Syrup was allegedly contaminated with diethylene glycol, a toxic substance. The syrup, used for cold and fever among children, was subsequently banned.

The probe has revealed that Digital Vision had supplied its entire stock of 5,575 bottles of the syrup to Ambala Cantonment-based distributor Shiva Medical Hall. The latter supplied 1,620 bottles to PP Laboratories, Palwal; 324 to Shiva Medical Agencies, Ambala Cantonment; 162 each to Padha Medical Hall, Panipat, and Anil Medical Store, Raipur Rani; 50 to Om Medicose, Babain; and 30 bottles each to Rana Medical Hall, Yamunanagar; and Dhanvantri Nursing Home, Kalka.

The syrup was also supplied to three firms in Jammu, two in Saharanpur and one each in Kanpur, Aurangabad, Dehradun, Baddi, Bulandshahr, Vijayawada, Trichy, Ghaziabad and Shillong. Soon after the incident, the unsold stock was seized.

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