New Delhi, Jan 29 : Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss today said the multi-crore kidney transplant racket would be probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), citing international links to the scam.
Ramadoss said the racket has its roots in several states and has international connections, adding that it would not be possible for the state agencies to conduct investigation properly.
He was reportedly unhappy over the progress of the preliminary investigation by the police.
Ramadoss has also proposed some amendments to the existing Organ Transplant Act. The amended bill would be introduced in the Parliament in the budget session, he said.
Among the amendments, two to seven years of sentence has reportedly been proposed for those found guilty, besides monitoring the functioning of private nursing homes, private medical practitioners, and middlemen involved in the organ transplant business.
Dr Amit Kumar, the alleged kingpin of the racket, has been on the run ever since the scam was unearthed last week. It is suspected that Kumar could have fled to Nepal. The police have initiated the process for issuance of a red corner notice against him.
Last week, five foreigners were arrested in connection with the nine-year-old racket.
Meanwhile, the police are conducting raids at properties owned by Kumar in Gurgaon, and at places across the country.
Ten hospitals and laboratories have come under the scanner and at least five nurses and a score of other employees of two hospitals in Gurgaon are being questioned for their alleged role in the illegal operations.
It is suspected that at least 500 transplants would have been conducted as part of the racket with most of the victims hailing from Meerut, Ghaziabad and Moradabad districts of Uttar Pradesh.