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NPPA seeks to recover Rs 4,551 crore for overcharging

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82 per cent of the total amount is under litigation

Drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) is trying to recover a whopping Rs 4,551 crore, including interest, from various pharmaceutical companies for overcharging as of February this year. As much as 82 per cent of the total amount is under litigation.

“Since inception of NPPA, there are 1,389 cases as on 29.02.2016 where demand notices have been issued by NPPA to pharmaceutical companies,” said Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers recently.

A sum of Rs 4,935.92 crore has been demanded as “overcharged amount including interest whenever updated” out of which Rs 384.91 crore has been realised till February end this year, he added.

“The outstanding amount is Rs 4,551.01 crore as on 29.02.2016 and Rs 3,698.32 crore representing about 82 per cent of the total outstanding amount is under litigation in various High Courts and Supreme Court,” Ahir said. NPPA is actively pursuing the court cases, he added.

NPPA mandate is to fix or revise the prices of controlled bulk drugs, formulations and to enforce prices and availability of the medicines in the country. It has been entrusted with fixation of prices of scheduled drugs under the Drug (Price Control) Order, 1995 (DPCO) 1995 and DPCO 2013. NPPA also monitors prices of decontrolled drugs in order to keep them at reasonable levels.

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