Police have arrested a suspect on charges of "illegally" administering vaccines against the coronavirus at homes in Karachi's Saddar area in return for some monetary gains.
The suspect, who was arrested by Preedy police on the complaint of a health official, allegedly embezzled vaccine doses from a vaccination centre, South SSP Zubair Nazeer Shaikh said on Monday.
The senior officer hinted that more suspects might be involved in the activity.
According to the first information report (FIR), reviewed by Dawn.com, the complainant, provincial drug inspector for South district Ghulam Ali, said he had received information from "reliable sources" that certain persons had stolen Covid-19 vaccines from a vaccination centre established by the Sindh government and were allegedly administering the jabs to residents at their homes in return for a payment.
The drug inspector said he subsequently approached a man, Mohammed Ali, whose name was conveyed to him as being involved in the activity, on the pretext of getting vaccinated. The suspect agreed to administer the jab at his home and told him that he would meet him at a restaurant in Saddar at 10:30pm on July 25.
The complainant said he, along with Covid-19 focal person Dr Sohail Raza Sher, Dr Dilawar Jiskani and a police party, reached the agreed spot where the suspect Mohammed Ali was taken into custody. The suspect possessed a box of syringes and also had two empty vaccination cards with inscription of Government of Sindh and the health department. The box also contained three used vials and 14 specimen collection swabs.
During initial probe, the suspect revealed that he was an employee of ‘Sultan Madad Private Limited’, whose owner was a former army officer, retired Major Amanullah Sultan, according to the FIR.
The suspect told police that he worked as the company's field officer, while the owner provided him and others with the vaccines which they used to administer to citizens at their homes in return for monetary compensation. This money was paid to Maj Sultan, as per the FIR.
Police have registered the FIR against the detained suspect, Mohammed Ali, retired Maj Sultan and others under Sections 420 (cheating), 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code, and Section 30 of the Drug Act of 1976.