NURPUR, MAY 12
Rampant black marketing and scarcity of health devices like digital thermometers, pulse-oximeters and steamers is on the rise in lower Kangra areas. The demand of these devices has increased manifold after the outbreak of the second wave of Covid pandemic. In the absence of any checking by the drug control authorities or local administration these devices have become scarce and selling at higher rates in this region in Nurpur, Jawali, Fatehpur and Indora sub divisions.
Inquiries made by The Tribune revealed that the prices of these devices have shot up in the wholesale markets at Jassur in Nurpur and Pathankot in the neigbhouring Punjab. The wholesalers are selling these devices without billing to the retail chemists.
The digital thermometer available in the wholesale market one month ago for Rs 70 now is being sold for Rs 130 and steamer used for inhaling steam being sold earlier for Rs 150 is now available for Rs 225. The wholesale price of pulse oximeters has increased over three times within one month. It was priced only Rs 400 one month back but now being sold at for 1,300 by the wholesalers.
Intriguingly, neither drug control authorities nor administration has paid any heed and rampant black marketing of these health devices was continuing. Even though overpriced, these devices are not always available with the retailer chemists in the region.
“Since these health checkup devices are overpriced and available without billing, I have left selling these for the past over one fortnight,” says one chemist of Nurpur.
Wholesale chemists said the demand of immunity boosting supplements like zinc, vitamin c and vitamin d tablets along with antibiotics like ezithromycin, doxycycline and paracetamol salts had increased two to three times during the past one month.
Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Kangra Dr Gurdarshan Gupta has appealed to the people not to resort to self-medication and consult a doctor and undergo Covid testing for avoiding any untoward situation.