State governments have been asked to take strict action against anyone found indulged in black marketing or hoarding of antiviral drug remdesivir, Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister D V Sadananda Gowda said on Monday.
The minister said he has also taken a meeting with the pharma secretary to review the availability of the antiviral drug which is used in the treatment of COVID-19.
"Took a meeting with the Secretary (Pharma) to review availability of #Remdesivir. Government is in regular touch with manufacturers regarding this. Weekly production plans have been prepared in consultation with the manufacturers," Gowda tweeted.
Black marketing, hoarding of remdesivir is being strictly monitored and state governments have been advised to take strict action against those indulging in such malpractices, he added.
In another tweet, the minister said: "Manufacturers have agreed to ramp up production of #Remdesivir. Additional sites for production have been approved. Production to be doubled in coming weeks."
On Sunday, Minister of State of Chemicals and Fertilisers Mansukh L Mandaviya had tweeted that the government plans to double the production of remdesivir to around 3 lakh vials per day over the next 15 days, to make it available readily for the treatment of COVID-19.
The government has given permission to 20 plants to produce the antiviral drug, he had said.
Already, remdesivir is being rolled out of 20 plants in the country. On Saturday, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) had announced that the pharmaceutical companies like Cadila Healthcare, Dr Reddy's Laboratories and Cipla have reduced the price of their respective brands of remdesivir injection (100mg/vial).