Making hay in the black market: Remdesivir sold at Rs 40,000, oxygen cylinder at Rs 35,000 | Noida News

NOIDA: Doctors say it’s not a wonder drug and has warned against its indiscriminate use, but in the black market, Remdesivir continues to thrive. The latest Remdesivir hoarder to be bused is a 31-year-old Delhi resident, who made a killing selling all injections for anywhere between Rs 15,000 and Rs 40,000 since March, finding most of his customers through WhatsApp groups , police said.
Remdesivir is a drug meant for hospital use only and cannot be sold anywhere else. But Rachit Ghai found plenty of customers who would cough many times the MRP – Remdesivir is sold under different brand names by companies and the price varies widely, starting at just under Rs 1,000.
Ghai had found the injections from an assistant and had been selling them across Noida. The injections were acquired by agents in Delhi’s Chandigarh and Dwarka, police said. Sources said the injections were piloted from a company or hospital unit.
Ghai was in possession of 100 vials of the injection when he was arrested. At least five of those vials are made from Bangladesh. Ghai, who lives in Saraswati Vihar in Delhi, had been active on some WhatsApp groups joined by people dealing with medical emergencies, police sources said.
“We received information that some people have been selling Remdesivir to patients’ families at a high price. The accused was active on Facebook and other social media platforms where the information was received and action taken. He found most of the vials from Chandigarh and about five-six vials from Delhi, ”DCP (crime) Abhishek Singh told TOI. Singh added that Ghai had initially sold the injections for a low margin but was greedy and increased his quotation.
Ghai worked in a cardboard factory in Delhi but moved to Noida in March after it closed. A policeman said Ghai claimed to have sold about 150 injections since March. “But we think it’s much more than that. He is linked to a larger agent who supplied him with the injections, ”says Singh.
Cops are looking for a man from Haryana, who they think is the main supplier. A police officer said since the injection was accessed in bulk, the batch numbers of the injections were being scanned to check where they were produced. Ghai is ordered under sections 420 of the IPC (cheating) and various sections of the Drug and Cosmetic Act, 1940. He is also ordered under the Epidemic Diseases Act. Santro and Rs 1.54 lakh in cash were seized from the accused.
Police are also investigating the black marketing of oxygen, which is in high demand. Several oxygen cylinder providers in Harola told TOI that they had run out of supplies and did not know when they would be available.
Meanwhile, advertisements circulated by youths alleged that oxygen cylinders were available for Rs 30,000 of which Rs 5,000 would be refunded on return of the cylinder. Monu, whose number was circulated on Twitter, had called patients to a Sector 62 metro station to sell the cylinders. Moreover, some vendors force people to buy a whole oxygen cylinder instead of giving a refill, which costs Rs 500-600. A seller from Kalindi Kunj discussed this correlation with a cylinder offer for Rs 35,000 and promised to deliver it in Noida.