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Cipla's petition against drug price revision rejected

Dept of pharmaceuticals says since the company has not informed whether the price fixed by regulator has been implemented, there is no question of review

Sushmi Dey  |  New Delhi 

The department of pharmaceuticals turned down a review petition by drugmaker Cipla against a price fixation order by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority, slashing the price of Dytor Plus, a medicine for kidney and heart ailments.

DoP said since the company had not informed whether the price fixed had been implemented, there was no question of a review. It has asked the regulator to recover if there is any amount overcharged by the firm on sales of the drug.

"Based on the record note of discussions of the personal hearing and other records available in the file, the reviewing authority has decided that the review application of the petitioners may be rejected," DoP said in its order.

The review petition was filed by Cipla against an NPPA pricing order of October 2010. The pricing authority, through its order, had capped the price of Cipla's Dytor Plus tablets, which contains spironolactone and torsemide. According to an official, spironolactone is under government's price control and therefore, the regulator has the right to fix the ceiling price.

According to the 2010 order of NPPA, the ceiling price of the drug was fixed in the range of Rs 21.76 and Rs 24.40 for a strip of 10 tablets, depending on its strength.

According to the latest DoP order, Cipla may have to pay a penalty along with the overcharged amount if it has not implemented the prices notified by the NPPA through its 2010 order.

There are already a lot of cases pending against the Mumbai-based drug maker for allegedly overcharging consumers for various medicines. Most of these cases were pending with various courts across the country till the Supreme Court recently directed to combine all of them.

According to an official, the apex court is expected to hear the matter in beginning of May.

"There is an amount of around Rs 1,800 crore pending against Cipla for overcharging consumers for medicines," the official added.

Shares of Cipla today ended at Rs 401.05 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, up 0.05 per cent from their close on Wednesday.

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First Published: Fri, April 19 2013. 00:40 IST