Swadeshi Jagran Manch activists staged a dharna at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on July 10 to protest against Norvatis pharmaceutical company. The demonstrators demanded the Government of India not to award Novartis a patent for its anti-cancer drug, Glivec. Similar demonstrations were organised at many places across the globe including Cape Town in South Africa the same day. Many organisations all around the globe are pursuing Indian government not to succumb before the Novratis.
The SJM urged the government to depute Attorney General to appear and argue in this case, so that this case is handled effectively. The workers also demanded an immediate ban on the acquisition of Indian pharmaceutical companies by foreign companies. At the same time the Swadeshi Jagran Manch warned the Novratis to withdraw its case in view of its likely impact on the public health in the country.
It is to be noted that a legal battle is on between Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis and Government of India in the Supreme Court. Final hearing and arguments of this case began on July 10. Many companies in India manufacture a drug named Glivec. This drug is effective for blood cancer. The price at which Novratis sells this drug is Rs 1,20,000 per month (four tablets per day), whereas the Indian companies manufacturing this drug sells the same at rupees 10,000 per month. If monopolised, this drug would be unaffordable to most of the users (blood cancer patients) and will cause death for them. (FOC)