Maharashtra Remdesivir row: RTI activist raises questions over how Devendra Fadnavis, BJP could obtain drug

Right-to-Information activist Saket Gokhale has raised questions over how Leader of the Opposition Devendra Fadnavis or the BJP, as private players, could obtain a crucial drug when its sale is allowed only to the state government. In a series of tweets, he asked how “in the midst of a severe shortage why was BJP hoarding 4.75 crores worth of Remdesivir in their party office (just like in Gujarat)”. “And most importantly - while @nawabmalikncp ji showed yesterday that the Central govt had stopped supplies of Remdesivir to Maharashtra govt, then how was BJP’s Fadnavis allowed to procure it sneakily without informing the state govt? That too stock worth 4.75 crores?” another tweet read.

Gokhale slammed Fadnavis and the BJP for rushing to the police station after Bruck Pharma company director Rajesh Dokina was summoned for inquiry.

“Last night, Vile Parle police station seized Rs 4.74 crore worth of Remdesivir vials that were being secretly moved by Gujarat company. Suddenly, @Dev_Fadnavis shows up at the police station last night & says BJP ordered those vials from Daman and Gujarat.”

“Fadnavis then claims that the BJP bought that stock to distribute to people. 1. How did a private individual like Fadnavis procure Remdesivir stock from Gujarat when sale is allowed only to the government?” he asked.

“Why didn’t Fadnavis inform the state govt of the supplier & help procure the stock through state channels? 3. In the midst of a severe shortage, why was BJP hoarding 4.75 crores worth of Remdesivir in their party office (just like in Gujarat)?” he asked.

He further tweeted, “It’s shameful that the Modi govt is throttling supplies of Remdesivir to Maharashtra Govt while sneakily allowing Fadnavis & BJP to distribute it through their party office. This is politics of the filthiest kind where BJP is playing with lives of innocent people.’’

Gokhale said he would be writing to Maharashtra Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil and Health Minister Rajesh Tope, requesting an immediate probe into this. “Fadnavis in collusion with Modi Govt is starving Maharashtra of Remdesivir supplies while hoarding them in BJP offices,” he claimed.

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