Mirwaiz Nails Govt’s ‘No Funds For Drug Testing’ Lies

“Doctor-Pharma Company Nexus Deplorable, Impartial Probe Needed”

SRINAGAR: Tearing into the government’s “lack-of-funds”  excuse in stringent drug testing, the chairman of the Hurriyat (M), Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, on Friday said that doctors, chemists and medical representatives also could not absolve themselves of blame in the supply of sub-standard pharmaceuticals in Kashmir.

In his Friday sermon at the Jamia Masjid here, the Mirwaiz demanded an impartial scrutiny of all drugs supplied to the valley and probes into the role of purchasing committees, asking for leading doctors and civil society members to be made a part of the process.

The Mirwaiz lashed out at the government’s “paucity of funds”  refrain, asking how the chief minister could spend Rs 20 crore annually on helicopter travel when the state did not have enough money to set up proper drug-testing laboratories.

“The excuse of lack of funds is baseless,” the Mirwaiz said. “A government which spends crores of rupees on the lifestyles of ministers has no business claiming it is short of money for testing drugs.”

The Mirwaiz deplored the nexus between some doctors, pharmaceutical companies, chemists and private clinic owners in the sale of spurious drugs, saying some members of the medical fraternity received expensive gifts for pushing the products of particular firms.

He said that the Srinagar media had played a commendable role in focussing on the spurious drugs issue, and exposing machinations at the government and semi-government level.

ON KASHMIR SITUATION

Describing India’s military concentration in the state as the biggest obstacle in resolving the Kashmir issue, the Mirwaiz contested the government’s claims of the situation having improved in the region.

“The government’s claims are baseless and contrary to ground realities,” he said. “Because, instead of reducing the military presence in Kashmir, the government is increasing it with every passing day.”

“Tensions are being increased by setting up new military camps and bunkers in various areas of Kashmir,” he said.

“India has been continuously adding to its military presence in Kashmir since 1947 under various pretexts,” he said.

“People in Parigam Pulwama are justified in holding protests against military camps in their area. Such camps and bunkers should be removed from across Kashmir as they become the cause for the killing of innocent human-beings.

Demanding troop withdrawal from Kashmir, the Mirwaiz said that people in the region were beset with deep insecurity because of the military presence.

“Troop withdrawal is imperative if the climate has to be made conducive for resolving the Kashmir issue,” he said.

Referring to the Supreme Court’s order to transfer the trail of the BSF men involved in the killing of Zahid Farooq to a civil court, the Mirwaiz demanded impartial investigations into the Kunan Poshpora mass rape, the Chattisingpora massacre, the Shopian tragedy and other cases involving the security forces. 

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