CHENNAI: Epharmacies have moved a division bench of the Madras High Court challenging a recent order banning sale of medicines online till the central health ministry formalises the regulatory environment for web-based drug aggregators.
Madras High Court judge Pushpa Sathyanarayana, on Monday, had imposed a restraint on online pharmacies from conducting their businesses and directed the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation to notify necessary amendments on the Gazette before end of January next year. Against this order, online drug aggregators have litigated before a division bench of the Madras High Court.
“The court is expected to take up the matter on Thursday,” Chandra Kumar, counsellor for the Tamil Nadu Chemists and Druggists Organisation, said.
The TNCDA had won the ban on online sales on grounds that the businesses were operating without valid licences.
While imposing the ban, Madras High Court had faulted the central government for not putting out the final contours of the regulatory environment even after two years since a similar petition was filed with the Madras High Court.
Justice Sathyanarayana, in her order banning sales till January, said: “The central government had already been given a longer rope by the order of the division bench…” adding that the “rules are still at the draft stage” even though its has been two years since the judgement.
Netmeds, one of the respondents to the case, had argued that it was not “violating any law,” particularly ones concerning retail licensing and others. Practo had submitted that a “request for prescription drugs would be rejected, unless a valid prescription is uploaded with such request.”