Stopping exports of Remdesivir, used in COVID-19 treatment, is a "half baked exercise" if the units manufacturing it are not allowed to sell it in the domestic market, the Delhi High Court said to the Centre today.
A bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli also questioned the holding of exports of the medicine at the ports if the same cannot be diverted to the domestic market for use by patients.
The court asked the Centre to consider exporting the consignments already held at the docks lest they lose their efficacy and cannot be used by anyone, here or abroad.
The observations and suggestions from the court came after the Centre said that consignments at the port cannot be diverted to the domestic market as those medicines do not have the approval of the drug controller for sale in India.
The Centre also said that future exports of the medicine were banned also for the reason that there was shortage of the raw materials used for making Remdesivir.
It said that presently if anyone applies for manufacturing Remdesivir for the domestic market, the application for license would be dealt with expeditiously and permission would be granted subject to meeting all the conditions and requirements under the law.
The court, thereafter, asked the Centre to communicate with all the drug manufacturers and encourage them to manufacture the drug for the Indian markets.
During the hearing, the Centre told the bench that it has approved 25 additional units for manufacture of the medicine taking the total sites to 57 which in turn has led to ramping up of production from 38 lakh vials a month to one crore vials a month.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)