KARACHI: Pakistan Chemists and Druggists Association (PCDA) has sent a legal notice to Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) for ignoring the Sindh High Court’s directives about keeping all stakeholders on board while drafting the drug pricing policy.

“The honourable court has clearly mentioned in its decision on November 7, 2014 that DRAP must finalise the pricing policy in their meeting on November 18, 2014 after consulting all stakeholders and in case of failure, the meeting must be held every day with stakeholders until a policy is agreed upon,” the letter said.

As per the PCDA, DRAP has violated the court’s decision by not finalising the policy on the said date as the meeting lasted for just 30 minutes. A subsequent policy board meeting on November 20 in Islamabad was held excluding the chemists and druggists association.

Instead of complying with the court’s directions, a twenty minute presentation was made before the stakeholders after which their opinion was sought, albeit very briefly. The policy proposal did not accommodate stakeholders input, the association said.

Talking to Dawn, a source said that provincial secretaries were also absent on November 18 despite court’s categorical directions in this regard.

The court had also ordered DRAP to share the draft policy with all stakeholders instantly so that they may have sufficient time for filing objection (s) to the same (if any) before the board’s meeting. However, DRAP did not follow the directions.

PCDA, a body of importers, exporters, indenters, distributors, wholesalers and retailers, has asked DRAP to reconvene the said meeting and ensure presence of all concerned government officials and stakeholders within seven days of receipt of the notice.

The body warns that it will be forced to take legal recourse if DRAP fails to oblige.

Published in Dawn, November 25th , 2014

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