Form STF to take action against black-marketing of life-saving drugs: Delhi govt to DMs

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New Delhi, Apr 26 (PTI) The Delhi government has directed all district magistrates to constitute a 'Special Task Force' to take strict action against those involved in hoarding and black-marketing of life-saving drugs which are used for treating coronavirus patients.

Chief Secretary Vijay Dev, in an order, said drugs controllers will also constitute sufficient number of teams on urgent basis for inspecting, checking, raiding and stopping the manufacturing and supply of spurious drugs.

Dev, who is also the chairman of DDMA's state executive committee, directed officers concerned to submit a daily action-taken report.

On Sunday, Delhi recorded 350 COVID-19 deaths and 22,933 cases with a positivity rate of 30.21 per cent. This was the fourth day on the trot that the city had recorded over 300 fatalities due to coronavirus.

It had reported 357 fatalities, the highest so far since the pandemic began a year ago, on Saturday, 348 on Friday and 306 on Thursday, according to government data.

'All district magistrates shall also constitute a Special Task Force with the help and assistance of their counterpart district DCPs,” the chief secretary said in the order issued on Sunday.

'This Special Task Force shall be primarily responsible for inspecting, checking, raiding and stopping the manufacturing and supply of spurious life-saving drugs and also to prevent the black marketing and hoarding of all life-saving drugs which are used for treating COVID-19 patients,' he added.

All district magistrates and DCPs will issue necessary directives to all field functionaries and 'Special Task Force' for taking strictest action against the blackmarketeers, hoarders and manufacturers and suppliers of spurious drugs, Dev said.

Earlier in the day, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that the Delhi government will provide free COVID-19 vaccines to all those above 18 years of age in the national capital for which purchase of 1.34 crore doses has been approved.

Vaccinations will be open for all adults from Saturday.

The government will make efforts to speed up vaccine purchase and administer it to the people, Kejriwal said in an online briefing.

Free vaccines will be provided at the Delhi government-run centres in the national capital. PTI BUN SNE