Gautam Gambhir Foundation illegally stocked COVID-19 drug: Delhi HC told
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Gautam Gambhir's foundation was found guilty of unauthorized stocking, procurement, and distribution of the medicine Fabiflu to COVID-19 patients, Delhi's drug controller body informed the Delhi High Court on Thursday. The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) also found Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Praveen Kumar guilty of similar offenses under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
The DCGI was submitting a fresh report to the Delhi HC after the body was reprimanded for previously giving a clean chit to Gambhir's foundation. The Delhi HC asked the DCGI to file a status report on further progress in the case within six weeks. The matter has been listed for hearing on July 29. The DCGI said action would be taken without delay.
According to Hindustan Times, the HC said that the amendment of the DCGI's report shows it was "trying to protect these people." It said, "When we rapped you then you came out with the truth. It's clearly evident...Don't put on a brave face today. We find that you have made a mistake and the good thing is that you have rectified your mistake."
Further, the court said, "You (Gautam Gambhir) did charity and tried to help the people, but in that, you caused a shortage because of which genuine patients could not get the medicine. There could have been other ways of helping people."
I am a man and all that affects mankind concerns me - Sardar Bhagat Singh!— Gautam Gambhir (@GautamGambhir) June 3, 2021
Earlier, the DCGI had cleared Gambhir and Kumar in the case, however, the Delhi HC had dismissed this report. On Monday, a division bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh had ordered a fresh report. The court was hearing a plea filed by Deepak Kumar, which questioned how politicians could procure huge quantities of medicines—required for COVID-19 treatment—and distribute them, despite a shortage.
On May 7, the Delhi HC had ordered the police to lead a probe into the alleged hoarding of oxygen cylinders and medicines. Later, the HC asked the DCGI to conduct an independent probe, which gave a clean-chit to Gambhir and nine others.