SC lifts ban on sale of Saridon and two other FDCs

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday lifted ban from the sale of Saridon and two other FDCs imposed by the central government last week. The ban was removed after a petition was filed by the drug makers.

The apex court has sought the reply from the Centre on petitions filed by drug manufacturing companies against the order to ban FDCs before 1988.

Notably, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had last week banned 328 fixed-dose combination (FDCs) drugs to stop their irrational use, including painkiller Saridon.

The government made its decision after the Drugs Technical Advisor Board (DTAB) suggested that these drugs might pose health risks.

The FDC medicines which are banned, is a combination of two or more drugs that is contained in a single dose form. They are manufactured to evade price control measures and are low cost drugs that can treat multiple diseases.

The move will likely affect over 6,000 medicine brands worth about Rs 25,000 crore across the country. With the ban, popular drugs including pain reliever Saridon, antibiotic Lupidiclox, skin care cream Panderm, antibacterial drug Taxim AZ and diabetes drug Gluconorm PG will be not available for sale.

The Board recommended that it is necessary to prohibit the manufacture, sale or distribution of these FDCs under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 in the larger public interest.

Considering the recommendations of DTAB and the expert committee, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, through a gazette notification, prohibited the FDCs.

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