MP Cong alleges Rs 100 cr scam in purchase of medicines

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Bhopal, Feb 1 (UNI) The Madhya Pradesh Congress today alleged that a scam to the tune of Rs 100 crore in the purchase of medicine by the health department has taken place in the state.

The allegation was made by Opposition Leader Jamuna Devi, state Congress General Secretary Manak Agrawal and senior legislator Sajjan Singh Verma while talking to reporters here today.

''The party would lodge a complaint with the Lokayukt Establishment about the matter along with evidence. Medicines are being procured by the Health department and the Small-scale Industries Corporation (MPSIC) at 40-50 per cent higher price,'' Ms Devi said, adding that the Health department would purchase medicines worth Rs 170 core.

She said margin of wholesaler and retailer would have been much less if medicines were purchased by manufacturer companies directly and a loss of Rs 100-110 crore could have been avoided.

Ms Devi alleged that Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Health Minister Ajay Vishnoi had a role in the scam saying they had effected change in medicine purchase policy and centralised it in the state capital.

She said ten tablets of painkiller Brufen 400 mg was available at a price of Rs six in the market. However, the MPSIC purchased it at a price of Rs 30.61. Likewise, ten tablets of Brufen 200 mg was available at a price of Rs 3.50 but was purchased at a cost of Rs 17.74.

The Opposition Leader alleged that CM's secretariat was also involved in the scam. The CM's secretary has been given the additional charge of MPSIC Managing Director. Purchase orders are being made without approval. Medicine bills are being paid without supply under political pressure,'' she said.

She said she possessed a notesheet of the Health Commissioner stating that medicines of about Rs 12.50 crore had been purchased without prior approval. The Congress was demanding high-level inquiry into the matter.

Ms Devi claimed that the scam had political protection which was evident from the fact that an honest IAS officer B R Naidu was not allowed to take charge despite his posting as Health Commissioner.

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