Congress party, which is sharing power with Shiv Sena and NCP in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra, has refuted the charges made by the leader of opposition Devendra Fadnavis that the state government was playing politics in the COVID-19 pandemic.
It has also retorted Fadnavis' allegations that the Maharastra Police was harassing a Daman-based Remdesivir supplier for agreeing to supply a stock of the drug to the state on the request of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders.
The Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee spokesman Sachin Sawant in a blistering attack said, "Absolutely astonishing to see both LOPs @Dev_Fadnavis ji & @mipravindarekar ji putting pressure on @MumbaiPolice for a businessman. What is the fault of police? They had intelligence that a large stock of 60000 viles of Remdesivir is hiding with exporters of Brook Laboratories which is not reported. After export ban, company must inform CDSCO & state FDA details of stock left with them. Mumbai police had called director for Inquiry but he kept evading. After 2 days he came. But BJP leaders became so upset that they personally rushed for his support (sic)."
Sawant further said," In pandemic when there is shortage of Remdesivir what do you expect from police? Can't they call anyone for Inquiry? Does BJP leaders take such steps for common people? We congratulate DCP Manjunath Singe and team for promptly performing their duty & Condemn act of BJP leaders."
On Saturday night Fadnavis and leader of opposition in the state council Pravin Darekar went to the DCP Manjunath Singe's office after the Bruck Pharma company distributor was summoned for inquiry.
Fadnavis targeted the MVA government saying ," As we all are fighting against #COVID19 pandemic in such a difficult times, in an extremely shameful act, MVA Government suddenly detained officials of Bruck Pharma who was supposed to supply Remdesivir to Maharashtra (sic)."
He further noted that the company official took all permissions from Maharashtra and Daman administration, even Union Minister himself asked him to supply maximum Remdesivir to Maharashtra, and if still MVA is busy doing such cheap politics, it is a matter of utter shame!"
However, Singe said that they had inputs that some exporters had 60,000 vials and they only wanted to verify the same. He also refuted the allegations that the distributor was arrested and said he was summoned just for an inquiry given the widespread black marketing of the antiviral medication.
"There's a shortage of Remdesvir in the state and black marketing is rampant. We had got information about this storage facility. Acting in good faith, we only wanted to verify the inputs. He (supplier) was called for an inquiry, it wasn't an arrest," said Singe.