Mumbai: The Maharashtra Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seized illegal stock of medicines worth Rs80,000 from Aarav Eye Hospital in Bhiwandi on February 9 after a tip-off. This is the second such raid this year.

Earlier this month, the FDA busted a counterfeit medicine racket in Nagpur and seized 21,600 tablets of ciprofloxacin procured through a government contract. Samples of this drug were taken in March last year  but its results that it lacked any therapeutic value came in December.

In the present case, the eye hospital, owned by Dr Ashwin Bafna, didn’t have the licence to stock medicines. The hospital was established in 2005 and opened its second branch in Mira Road in 2017. The Bhiwandi branch opened in 2021.

A senior FDA official said that the pharmacist, Mohammad Ansari, didn’t have the licence required under the provisions of Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules thereunder. Ansari initially told officials that he has the Pharmacists Registration Certificate issued by the Maharashtra Pharmacy Council but could not produce it; he later admitted not having any qualification as a pharmacist, the FDA official said. He added that the medicines seized can be sold only on the advice of a physician.

The official said, “Samples were drawn from the available stock and sale bills issued on and before February 9 were taken into custody.”