Telangana Drug Control Administration seizes white petroleum jelly and misleading medicines

The Altacold suspension, which claimed to treat fever, contravenes the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.

BySouth First Desk

Published Apr 17, 2024 | 12:41 PMUpdatedApr 17, 2024 | 12:41 PM

Telangana Drug Control Administration

The Drugs Control Administration in Telangana on Tuesday, 16 April, seized white petroleum jelly and Altacold suspension in two different instances in Hyderabad.

While the white petroleum jelly was seized from a medical store in Pet Basheerabad, Quthbullapur, the Altacold suspension was seized from Attapur for misleading advertisement.

The Altacold suspension advertised itself to treat fever, which is considered misleading as fever is just a symptom of the underlying infection, and drugs such as paracetamol don’t treat the root cause of the disease, instead, they help in alleviating discomfort.

The advertisement of a medicine for the treatment of “fever” in general is prohibited under the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.

Whereas, white petroleum jelly is treated as a medicine according to the Drugs and Cosmetics Act and has to be produced with a proper license.

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Illegally manufactured

It can only be made with a special license issued under this Act, following strict guidelines known as “Good Manufacturing Practices” (GMP) mentioned in Schedule-M of Drugs Rules. Additionally, it must meet certain quality standards outlined in the “Indian Pharmacopoeia” (IP).

In the raids conducted by the DCA officials, at a medical shop in Pet Basheerabad, Quthbullapur, it was found that the white petroleum jelly was illegally manufactured under the brand name “PURELINE,” by a firm named “Jubilant Cosmeceuticals” without a drug licence.

Medicines made without the right license don’t follow the rules for good manufacturing, called GMPs. They also might not meet the quality standards in the Indian Pharmacopoeia (IP), making them harmful to people’s health.

The manufacturing and sale of “drugs” without a valid “drug license” are punishable under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, with imprisonment for up to five years.

Misleading advertising

The Altacold suspension which claimed to treat fever contravenes the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.

Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954 prohibits the advertisement of certain drugs for the treatment of certain diseases and disorders.

The act reads, “No person shall take part in publication of advertisement regarding the diseases/disorders indicated under the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.”

On Tuesday, the Serilingampally zone DCA officials found the said drug a medical shop in Attapur limits.

Atlacold suspension— with the formula containing Paracetamol, Phenylephrine Hydrochloride & Chlorpheniramine Maleate suspension was manufactured by Candour Pharmaceuticals, Kala Amb, Sirmour, Himachal Pradesh.

The product is marketed by Altavista Healthcare Pvt. Ltd., Bangalore.

Persons who make misleading advertisements regarding drugs for treatment of certain diseases and disorders are punishable under Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954, with imprisonment which may extend to six months, or with fine, or with both.

The DCA has urged the public to stay vigilant and report any illegal activities concerning medicines to the nearest Drugs Control Administration Office with the help of contact information available under the “Key Contacts” section on the website or through the toll-free number 1800-599-6969 between 10:30 am to 5 pm.

(Edited by Sumavarsha Kandula)