The pharma trader's body All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) is up in arms against the Central government allegedly promoting e-pharmacy firms through the AarogyaSetuMitr facility offered through its AarogyaSetu mobile application.
The Organisation has sought the government to de-link the AarogyaSetuMitr from the app.
The organisation today alleged that the NITI Aayog has added links to four e-pharmacy players through the www.aarogyasetumitr.in extension of the app, thus promoting the online pharmacies, which it calls as "highly illegal, arbitrary and discriminatory manner as a marketing tool app".
J S Shinde President AIOCD said that its 850,000 members, their families and dependents, numbers run into over 3.5 crore are local, but sidelined while NITI Aayog promoted few Foreign funded entities in contradiction to the Prime Minister's announcement on "support local and be vocal for local". It is not only strange but shall devastate livelihood of local chemists, he added.
"We have been working along with the government all through the lockdown when the normal operations were paralysed putting all our efforts to avoid shortage of drug in any part of the country. And the government is giving a backdoor entry to the online pharmacies now. We are angry over this decision," said Rajiv Singhal, general secretary, AIOCD. AIOCD has also been promoting the AarogyaSetu App to its members and other stakeholders but the online pharmacy links were added almost four to five days back, he said.