Delhi High Court has directed the Union of India as well as the Indian Council Of Medical Research to consider as representation a plea seeking formulation of rules and regulations to prohibit sale of unlicensed and uncertified products claiming to be COVID19 compliant.
The Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan has directed the various Ministries of the Central Government to consider the claims made in the petition and expeditiously pass an appropriate order on the same in accordance with law, after providing adequate hearing to the Petitioner.
Moved by Green Dream Foundation, the petition was filed against the sale and advertisement of 'COVID Oven' - a product for sterilising food articles and PPE kits, making them safe for consumption.
The Petitioner is aggrieved by the fact that the owner of the said product is advertising the same by brandishing a certificate issued by Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. The Petitioner has argued that IISc, Bangalore, has no authority to issue certificates or licenses for sale of pharmaceutical products.
Upon inquiry, IISc revealed that it only tested the functionality of the product, in terms of UV radiation, and the observations of the Institute were not supposed to be either published or advertised.
The petition states:
'...there is no proper mechanism evolved by the Government of India to stop launching, promoting and selling of products which are not certified by any agency to be able to kill/eliminate COVID-19 virus.'
It is further argued by the Petitioner that the 'Guidance for Evaluation of Novel Applications for COVID19' issued by the ICMR fails to clarify proper mechanism for certification/ accreditation authority or any hierarchy for the same.
'The lack of mechanism/checks by Government of India has led to launching and sale of misleading and dangerous products such as Corona-Oven', the Petitioner contended.
Petitioner has gone on to argue that despite multiple representations being made, the Government of India has failed to take any measure to take these unlicensed products off the market which are deceiving the public by following unfair trade practices.