Incorrect manufacturing date on painkiller strip creates a flutter on social media

The incident shows lack of regulation on the part of Indian drug authorities, say medical representatives and controllers

By Jyotsna Singh
Published: Thursday 18 June 2015

The photo of the medicine strip shows the manufacturing date to be April 2016, even though it is June 2015 at present (Photo taken from Facebook page)

A photograph of a strip of painkiller with the wrong manufacturing date has created a flutter on popular social networking sites, Facebook and Whatsapp.

The photo shows the manufacturing date of the medicine to be April 2016, even though it is June 2015 at present. The expiry date is printed as March 2018.

The “controversial” painkiller is Flame, a combination of ibuprofane, paracetamol and caffeine, manufactured by Indian company Vishal Pharmaceuticals. The batch number of the strip manufactured by the Indore-based medicine firm is 15-016.

Reactions pour in

“This is a punishable offence and the maximum punishment can be lifetime imprisonment. Under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, printing correct manufacturing date is compulsory,” said G N Singh, Drugs Controller General of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

He, however, added that the regulatory body cannot take any action against the company until and unless someone registers a complaint. “Based on the complaint, we can do a thorough investigation and take appropriate action.”

Printing wrong manufacturing date can lead to serious consequences. “It is not possible to check the validity of the expiry date if the manufacturing date is incorrect. The shelf life for ibuprofane is two to three years. With the given information we cannot ascertain if the expiry date is okay,” Bhupendra Kumar, general secretary, Indian Pharmacist Association, said. He added that such matters should be regulated strongly.

According to Deepak Arora, a Chandigarh-based medical representative, a drug goes through a number of checks before leaving the manufacturing unit.

“This shows a callous attitude towards something important. Providing this information is compulsory under the drugs Act for reasons of safety,”

Arora has passionately shared the photograph on all forms of social media. “I am from the medicine industry and I wanted everyone to know about this wrong practice,” he said.

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