ISLAMABAD : Patron Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders Shahid Rasheed Butt on Thursday urged the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) to take action unilateral hike in the prices of drugs by some multinational companies.

It was an illegal move by the multinationals to earn additional profit on the cost of poor patients and traders would not allow exploitation of masses by the pharmaceuticals with the connivance of officials concerned, he said.

Speaking to the business community, he said the DRAG should take action against the foreign companies lest the local pharma industry follow the suit burdening masses. Otherwise, the Drug Pricing Committee of DRAP be dissolved and a probe should be initiated against a top DRAP official, who had served as director in one of the culprit companies, he urged.

Shahid Butt said that the prices of oil and raw material continued to drop which had reduced production cost but situation in Pakistan was otherwise as everyone here was allowed to plunder masses for personal welfare. The business leader said that some companies were picking up unsold stock from the market to sell it at the new price which was the height of discrimination. He said that pharma mafia unilaterally increased prices of medicine in 2013 and no meaningful action was initiated against them, which had emboldened them.

“An action should be initiated against those, who have caused artificial shortage of life saving and other drugs in the market, ” he demanded.