- Prashant Reddy T. , Assistant Professor, National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR), discussed about the impact of oxytocin on human as well as animals.
2. Recently, the Ministry of Health restricted the manufacture of oxytocin only to the public sector unit.
3. On this decision, Karnataka Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (KAPL), has sparked fears of shortages and a disruption of supplies of this drug.
4. Oxytocin, which is considered to be a critical drug in maternal health care-is made primarily by the private sector.
5. It required in the treatment of both humans and animals.
6. The restrictions were imposed because of alleged misuse of the drug by dairy farmers on milch cattle to stimulate milk production.
7. Using in cattle, it may cause addiction, in which case cattle do not react to normal milk ejection stimuli.
8. However, studies conducted by the Central government, by the Indian Council of Medical Research and the National Diary Research Institute, concluded that the use of oxytocin does not have an adverse effect on either people or animals.
9. The apex court in 2016 judgment blamed oxytocin for a number of diseases, including breast and uterine cancers, male impotence, excessive hair growth in women and balding for men.
10. While the State government have ignored these directions, the Central government, decided to adopt the judgment as the basis of its order restricting manufacture to the public sector.
11. In the Union of India v. Pfizer(2017), the apex court concluded “ If the power under Section 26A is exercised on the basis of irrelevant material or on the basis of no material, the satisfaction itself that is contemplated by Section 26A would not be there and the exercise of the power would be struck down on this ground.”
12. The Delhi High Court is hearing a challenge against the government’s order should signal to the government that regulation of drugs has to be rigorous and reasoned.