Two doctors were among ten people arrested by the Delhi Police Crime Branch for manufacturing and selling Liposomal Amphotericin-B injections, used in the treatment of Black Fungus. 3,293 vials of fake injections have also been recovered from the house of one of the doctors, Dr Altamas Hussain, in southeast Delhi, police said.
When the crime branch raided the house in Nizamuddin West area, a massive cache of fake injections was found.
"Most of the injections were of the drug used to treat Black Fungus while some were Remdesivir injections. Some of these injections had crossed their expiry dates," said Monika Bhardwaj, DCP, Crime Branch.
Amphotericin-B is used to treat Mucormycosis, also known as Black Fungus, which damages the nose, eyes, sinuses, and sometimes even the brain. It can be life-threatening in diabetic or severely immuno-compromised individuals such as cancer patients or people with HIV/AIDS.
The police will also look into the medical degrees of the doctors involved in the racket.
The police raid came after it received a complaint on June 7 from the Drug Control Department of the Delhi government over the fake injections.
The gang had sold more than 400 fake injections. They used to sell each injection, available at a cost of Rs 250, for upto Rs 12,000.
An alarming number of cases of Mucormycosis has been reported among patients with COVID-19 and those who have recently recovered. Doctors believe that Mucormycosis may be triggered by the use of steroids, a life-saving treatment for severe and critically ill COVID-19 patients.
The rare infection is caused by exposure to mucor mould which is commonly found in soil, plants, manure, and decaying fruits and vegetables.