Police search India drug factory linked to sterilization deaths

Police search India drug factory linked to sterilization deaths

When Indian police came knocking at Sumit and Rajesh Mahawar’s pharmaceutical plant two days ago, they say the father and son locked the doors from the inside. A few hours later, after the police left, witnesses reported smoke started rising from medicines burning behind the building.

Mahawar Pharmaceuticals, run from an upscale residential street in the eastern city of Raipur, is now at the center of a probe into more than a dozen deaths in eastern India after 83 women were sterilized at a government-run family planning camp.

More victims arrived at hospitals from villages in Bilaspur district, about 100 km (60 miles) from Raipur, on Thursday and Friday, some clutching medicine strips from Mahawar and complaining of vomiting, dizziness and swelling, a doctor at the district’s main public hospital said.

At least one of the strips of antibiotics, seen by Reuters, was from the same batch as those handed out at the mass sterilization held on Saturday in the same district in Chhattisgarh state, one of India’s poorest.

The factory owners deny there was anything wrong with their medicines.

Police say they entered the Mahawar factory on Wednesday with the help of a security guard, but at first found nothing wrong. Drug inspectors returned the next day and shut it down, but not before two men were seen lighting a pre-dawn fire out back.

A construction worker across the street said the 4 a.m. fire struck her as unusual. In the past garbage fires had been lit in the evening, she said.

A Reuters reporter found a pile of ash surrounded by spilt white powder behind a wall at the single story blue and white building. In the cinders were medicine packets, including for Mahawar Pharma’s Ciprocin 500 mg pills.

A batch of this product has been banned by Chhattisgarh’s state government following the deaths but appears to still be available in rural areas.

Related Post

Indian fans’ insane reaction to exiting the World Cup
views 38
WHEN you’re a nation of a billion people there’s always going to be a few crazy cats — and we’re sure there are plenty of Indian fans who reacted comp...
North and South Korea exchange gunfire at border in latest clash
views 69
SEOUL (Reuters) - North and South Korea exchanged gunfire on Sunday when the North's soldiers approached the military border and did not retreat after...
10 dead and 150 trapped after flyover collapses and crushes workers in Indi...
views 60
Calcutta: Latest reports say at least 10 people are confirmed to have died, with many more fatalities feared. About 150 people, most of them construc...
Pakistani girl, 6, murdered after rape attempt
views 110
A six-year-old girl has been found dead in a garbage heap in Pakistan. The girl was strangled after her killer allegedly tried to rape her, the police...
India: Eight Women Die & many in critical condition after mass sterili...
views 340
Eight women have died in India and dozens more are in hospital, many in a critical condition, after a state-run mass sterilisation. Some 83 women unde...

SHARE WHAT YOU THINK