Medical Stores Go on Province-wide Strike Against Punjab Govt

Pharmacies and medical stores across Punjab are going on strike from today (Monday) onwards until their demands are met. Their demand calls on the government to amend the Drugs Act 1976, particularly in regards to those relating to against the pharmaceutical community.

The community has concerns regarding how the current Drug Act is against the pharmacies that are penalized heavily against alleged small offences. The government believes that it is doing what it can to protect the public against the use of fake or counterfeit medicines from pharmacies, hence its insistence on enforcing tougher penalties on alleged absconders.

The decision to protest and call for strike was taken in a meeting attended by 13 different representatives of pharmaceutical companies, distributors, wholesalers, pharmacists, chain pharmacies, homeo, tib, unani and herbal medicine makers, dealers and retailers. Pakistan Young Pharmacist Association and Pakistan Drug Lawyers Forum were also among the participants in the meeting.

Dissuaded by The Government

However one of the associations was dissuaded from joining the strike by Khawaja Imran Nazir, Minister for Primary and Secondary Health.

The minister said in a news conference that he held successful talks with the Pakistan Chemist Retailers Association which announced disassociation from the strike call by some elements.

After the meeting, Dr. Noor Muhammad Mahar, President of Pakistan Drug Lawyers Forum said that offences against pharmacists (who are highly qualified professionals according to him) should be brought to the Pharmacy Council, according to the Pharmacy Act 1967 instead of directly registering FIRs against them.

Threatening to Leave Pakistan

Dr. Haroon Yousaf, Pakistan Young Pharmacist Association’s General Secretary, adds that Pakistani pharmacists are already accepted all over the world. If derogatory laws against them are enforced, the pharmacist community in Pakistan would have no choice but to migrate to US, Canada, Australia and Europe.

At the previously mentioned press conference, Mr. Khawaja Nazir said that no one would be allowed to manufacture or sell fake or substandard drugs in Punjab. Anyone who does would have strict action taken against them.

The minister held talks with a delegation of the Pakistan Chemist Retailers Association. The delegation was headed by the chairman of the association, Ishaq Mayo.

Chemist Association Backing The Government

The chairman of the Chemist Retailers Association said that he supported the government’s decision to regulate homeopathic and herbal medicine. He added that the association would also back the government’s decision to take strict action against sale of counterfeit drugs and against medical stores and chemist that sell life saving medicine to addicts who use it as tranquilizers.

Mr. Mayo added that action should be taken against chemists or stores depending on the nature of the violation instead of outrightly stripping the dispenser of their license or sealing the store just because of a minor negligence.

Via Dawn

A techie, Overwatch and Street Fighter enthusiast, and Editor at ProPakistani.


  • Plz also attach the Drug Regulatory Act then people will know what type of offfences they are charging for.

    • You must be having the medicine shop. And must be selling harmful drugs in the name of useful drugs. ;)

        • Great, keep it up with spirit to boost people lives and support the bill that is for common men not for business owners.

          • Bro have you read the act it is for killing of business owners and this act also effects those which are doing ethical and neat business. There is a solid reason we are protesting and i cant write the whole story behind it.

    • It is defined that any drug having less than 1% of maim active ingredient will be considered as substandard, this is international definition….

  • For the common men: according to new drug act in Punjab, punishment of five-year jail with one million rupees fine has been announced for those who will sale substandard medicines, five-year jail and five crore rupees fine for those who will sale fake medicines, ten-year jail and ten crore rupees fine for those who will sale medicines without license.

    For the business owners: rest in piece. You should be ashamed to protest against such great steps by govt.

    For propakistani: go to h**l for misleading people and supporting these nonsense business owners.

    • What is definition of ‘sub-standard’ in new law ?
      Who will decide if product XYZ is sub-standard or not ? Drug Inspector or Courts?
      Action will be taken against medical store owner OR pharmaceutical company in this case?
      Is a medical store owner in a village good enough to judge if the product ABC is sub-standard or NOT? How will he do it? Test products in laboratory before selling them ??
      Will there be any action against drug authorities who have given licenses to sub-standard companies?

      Do you have answers to all above points?? Please share if you have.
      otherwise my advice do NOT pass judgment until you have complete info.

      • I support all your points. A pharmacy owner can not himself decide about a drug brand to be substandard. A pharmacy owner can only provide Warranty, which is given to him by distributor or a whole seller and so on. At the end responsibility goes to Manufacturers and those authorities who are issuing manufacturing licences to Pharmaceuticals, Nutraceuticals, Herbals and Homeo manufacturers. These authorities are making money just by providing licenses to substandard companies.

        • You both are either ignorant or trying to be innocent.

          It is defined that any drug having less than 1% of maim active ingredient will be considered as substandard, this is international definition.

          • Thanks for judging. That is nice of you. I did not know about it (if that matters to you).

            Information you shared is partial answer to point #1. Still don’t know if this information is mandatory to be printed on drug packing. If it is mandatory and still medical store pharmacist sells it then definitely he is responsible and must be punished (along with pharma company). However IF it is not mandatory to print this info then this law has flaw that should be fixed.

            I will be thankful if someone can shed light on rest of points as well.

      • Here is the ans to your questions following is the text copied from the pharmacy act:

        25. Qualifications for registration as a pharmacist or as an apprentice in pharmacy.-(1) The following persons shall, subject to the provision of sub-section (3), be qualified for registration as pharmacists under this Act, namely;
        (a) persons who hold a degree in pharmacy conferred by a University or an institution affiliated thereto, where the degree is recognised by the Central Council;
        (b) persons who hold a diploma in pharmacy granted by any institution recognised by the Central Council; and
        (c) persons who pass the examination in pharmacy held by a Provincial Council.
        (1-a) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (3) during the period of one year from the commencement of the Pharmacy (Amendment) Act 1973, a person who was on the 19th day of June, 1972 to be deemed to be qualified for registration as a Pharmacist shall be deemed to be so qualified; and
        (2) The following persons shall, subject to the provisions of sub-section (3) be qualified to be registered as an apprentice in Pharmacy, namely:
        (i) an inspector of Drugs and a government Analyst appointed under the Drugs Act, 1940 (XXIII of 1940), if not otherwise eligible for registration;
        (ii) a person certified by a Government Hospital to be a qualified compounder and dispenser;
        (iii) a person who has been taken as a student or apprentice in Pharmacy by, and produces a certificate to that effect from, a Pharmacist registered in Register “A” and approved for the purpose, by notification in the official Gazette, by the Provincial Government, and
        (iv) a person who is a qualified person within the meaning of rule 65 of the West Pakistan Drugs Rules 1958, if not otherwise eligible for registration.
        (3) No person shall be qualified for registration as a Pharmacist or as an apprentice in pharmacy-
        (a) if he is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a court; or
        (b) if he has been convicted by a court of any offence which in the opinion of the Provincial Council involves moral turpitude.
        26. Procedure for registration. (1) As soon as may be after the opening of the Registers under section 24, the Provincial Council shall, by notification in the official Gazette, invite applications from persons desirous of being registered as pharmacists or as apprentices in pharmacy.
        (2) An application for registration shall contain such particulars and be made in such form as may be specified by the Provincial Council and shall be accompanied be such fee as may be prescribed by the bye-laws.
        (3) The Provincial Council shall examine every application received by it and, if it is satisfied that the applicant is qualified for registration under section 25, direct the entry of the name of the applicant in the appropriate Register.
        (4) The Provincial Council shall, if it rejects the application of any person, inform the applicant in writing of such rejection within ninety days from the date of receipt of the application, and the applicant may within sixty days of the receipt of the information appeal against such rejection to the Provincial Government whose decision shall be final.
        (5) Failure to inform the applicant of the rejection within the period specified in sub-section (4) shall be treated as acceptance of the application for registration.
        27. Certificate of registration. (1) The Provincial Council shall issue a certificate of registration to a person who has been registered under section 26.
        (2) A certificate of registration issued under sub-section (1) shall bear a number and the official seal of the Council and be signed by its President and the Secretary and shall contain the following, namely;-
        (a) a passport size photograph of the person registered
        (b) the full signature of the person registered; and
        (c) an endorsement of any mark of identification of the person registered.
        (3) A copy of the certificate with all the particulars specified in sub-section (2) shall be kept in the official record of the Council,
        (4) A person to whom a certificate of registration has been issued may, if the original is lost, defaced or mutilated or for any other reason, obtain a duplicate thereof on payment of the same fee as was paid for the original.
        28. Revocation of certificate.-(1) The Provincial Council may, after giving the person concerned an opportunity to make representation and of being heard, revoke the certificate of registration issued to him, if such person-
        (a) incurs any disqualification specified in sub-section (3) of section 25; or
        (b) contravenes any of the provisions of the Poisons Act, 1919 (XII of 1919), the Dangerous Drugs Act, 1930 (II of 1930) the Drugs Act 1940 (XXIII of 1940), or this Act or of the rules made under any of those Acts; or
        (c) fails or neglects to comply with any directive in respect of the profession of a pharmacist with the Central Government or the Provincial government may, from time to time, issue; or
        (d) is guilty of such professional misconduct as may be laid down by the Provincial Council in this behalf.
        (2) Where any certificate of registration is revoked under sub-section (1), the name of the person whose certificate has been so revoked shall, after he has been given a notice in writing of such revocation, be struck off the register in which his name was entered and his registration shall thereupon stand cancelled.
        (3) The Provincial Council may, of its own motion and shall, upon an application made in this behalf within thirty days of the receipt of the notice under sub-section (2) by the person concerned review its decision to revoke a certificate of registration; and the decision of the Council upon such review shall be final.

    • Bro when you are doing ethical business and following proper guidelines but one day someone shows at your doorstep and says that you are selling or manufacturing sub standard or suporious drug and they have no proof of it and they charge you guilty of that crime for which you cant be bailed so what’s the reason of that act and this whole government strictness has whole different story behind it which i cant write here.

      • Internationally you can’t sell it without a pharmacist on the counter, if you find opportunities in Canada, US, UK etc without a pharmacy education please go for it before 2nd thought. Your paiti bhai sell Indian drugs for 100% profit, pharmaceutical in Pakistan is selling upto ten times if compared with Indian medicines, who is sincere with people of Pakistan?

        It is defined that any drug having less than 1% of maim active ingredient will be considered as substandard, this is international definition.

        • Then Govt Should arrest those paiti bhayes coz its govt institutions which allow those Indian drugs to be imported here not those who are doing their business neat and clean and if you are in pharmaceutical business you will surely understand what are we trying to say but if are not then i cant argue with you. I can argue with you in this matter for hours but i dont have time to waste my energy here.

        • If someone is selling indian drugs then who is allowing their import?
          Does any verifies these drugs at time of import?

          If there are any such cases then they MUST be punished. No opposition to that.

  • “If derogatory laws against them are enforced, the pharmacist community in Pakistan would have no choice but to migrate to US, Canada, Australia and Europe.” yea yea I wonder if they also do price fixing there.

    • Choroo choor do jan Pakistan ki ager haam logoon nay sub standard medicine imported medicine say mehgi leeni hai tu chorro do Pakistan kam iz kam kuch haram khoor tu kam hoon gay yahn say

      • bhai jan jitna asan haram khori karna in logon key liye Pakistan mei hai kahein aur kahan…. tab hi yeh log nahe jan chorte Pakistan ki.

  • I have searched about the laws to practice as pharmacist and find the following:

    25. Qualifications for registration as a pharmacist or as an apprentice in pharmacy.-(1) The following persons shall, subject to the provision of sub-section (3), be qualified for registration as pharmacists under this Act, namely;
    (a) persons who hold a degree in pharmacy conferred by a University or an institution affiliated thereto, where the degree is recognised by the Central Council;
    (b) persons who hold a diploma in pharmacy granted by any institution recognised by the Central Council; and
    (c) persons who pass the examination in pharmacy held by a Provincial Council.
    (1-a) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (3) during the period of one year from the commencement of the Pharmacy (Amendment) Act 1973, a person who was on the 19th day of June, 1972 to be deemed to be qualified for registration as a Pharmacist shall be deemed to be so qualified; and
    (2) The following persons shall, subject to the provisions of sub-section (3) be qualified to be registered as an apprentice in Pharmacy, namely:
    (i) an inspector of Drugs and a government Analyst appointed under the Drugs Act, 1940 (XXIII of 1940), if not otherwise eligible for registration;
    (ii) a person certified by a Government Hospital to be a qualified compounder and dispenser;
    (iii) a person who has been taken as a student or apprentice in Pharmacy by, and produces a certificate to that effect from, a Pharmacist registered in Register “A” and approved for the purpose, by notification in the official Gazette, by the Provincial Government, and
    (iv) a person who is a qualified person within the meaning of rule 65 of the West Pakistan Drugs Rules 1958, if not otherwise eligible for registration.
    (3) No person shall be qualified for registration as a Pharmacist or as an apprentice in pharmacy-
    (a) if he is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a court; or
    (b) if he has been convicted by a court of any offence which in the opinion of the Provincial Council involves moral turpitude.
    26. Procedure for registration. (1) As soon as may be after the opening of the Registers under section 24, the Provincial Council shall, by notification in the official Gazette, invite applications from persons desirous of being registered as pharmacists or as apprentices in pharmacy.
    (2) An application for registration shall contain such particulars and be made in such form as may be specified by the Provincial Council and shall be accompanied be such fee as may be prescribed by the bye-laws.
    (3) The Provincial Council shall examine every application received by it and, if it is satisfied that the applicant is qualified for registration under section 25, direct the entry of the name of the applicant in the appropriate Register.
    (4) The Provincial Council shall, if it rejects the application of any person, inform the applicant in writing of such rejection within ninety days from the date of receipt of the application, and the applicant may within sixty days of the receipt of the information appeal against such rejection to the Provincial Government whose decision shall be final.
    (5) Failure to inform the applicant of the rejection within the period specified in sub-section (4) shall be treated as acceptance of the application for registration.
    27. Certificate of registration. (1) The Provincial Council shall issue a certificate of registration to a person who has been registered under section 26.
    (2) A certificate of registration issued under sub-section (1) shall bear a number and the official seal of the Council and be signed by its President and the Secretary and shall contain the following, namely;-
    (a) a passport size photograph of the person registered
    (b) the full signature of the person registered; and
    (c) an endorsement of any mark of identification of the person registered.
    (3) A copy of the certificate with all the particulars specified in sub-section (2) shall be kept in the official record of the Council,
    (4) A person to whom a certificate of registration has been issued may, if the original is lost, defaced or mutilated or for any other reason, obtain a duplicate thereof on payment of the same fee as was paid for the original.
    28. Revocation of certificate.-(1) The Provincial Council may, after giving the person concerned an opportunity to make representation and of being heard, revoke the certificate of registration issued to him, if such person-
    (a) incurs any disqualification specified in sub-section (3) of section 25; or
    (b) contravenes any of the provisions of the Poisons Act, 1919 (XII of 1919), the Dangerous Drugs Act, 1930 (II of 1930) the Drugs Act 1940 (XXIII of 1940), or this Act or of the rules made under any of those Acts; or
    (c) fails or neglects to comply with any directive in respect of the profession of a pharmacist with the Central Government or the Provincial government may, from time to time, issue; or
    (d) is guilty of such professional misconduct as may be laid down by the Provincial Council in this behalf.
    (2) Where any certificate of registration is revoked under sub-section (1), the name of the person whose certificate has been so revoked shall, after he has been given a notice in writing of such revocation, be struck off the register in which his name was entered and his registration shall thereupon stand cancelled.
    (3) The Provincial Council may, of its own motion and shall, upon an application made in this behalf within thirty days of the receipt of the notice under sub-section (2) by the person concerned review its decision to revoke a certificate of registration; and the decision of the Council upon such review shall be final.

    • Bhai simply you can’t run a pharmacy without a pharmacist even in Arab countries. Ye ayashi sirf Pakistan mai ha. Not only 8 pass are doing job of a pharmacist but also of a Dr.

      • I agree that this problem of uncertified pharmacists and doctors exists in Pakistan.

        So we agree there is a problem. Now come to point why this problem is in Pakistan and what are possible solutions.

        Has govt. done any efforts to prepare a supply of qualified professionals?

        Do we have enough number of qualified pharmacists that can meet the demand of pakistani population?

        Are qualified pharmacists willing to work in villages / remote areas and earn meager 15k-30k per month ? What has Govt. done to facilitate them and encourage them to work in remote areas ?

        Do you think writing something on piece of paper in form of law will solve all these real time issues ? Just like women protection bill solved the issues in Sindh and rest of Pakistan ? Best of luck with that if you believe so.

        All these real time problems need solutions (which should be more than a piece of law or a threat of FIR). If we are not willing to think out of box to solve these problems then these problems will NOT go away. Guaranteed.

  • Ye insan sirf Punjab mai hai our country me aghr koye sub standard ya Punjab mai banthi 3rd class drug sell karai to Khar hai dosre sobo mai . Jb dission lena ho to wafaq ke baghar possible nahe our sobo kelie why f facilities matter so any thing Punjab province cando for there self and to roshan wo keya hai mazlom sher wali party l

  • Medicine prescribe doctor ny hi krni hai. Medical store ny just sale krni hai. better to put chemist or pharmasiust with doctor. store pr pharmacist ho bhi to medicine patient ko wohi dayni hai jo doctor ny likhi hai. rather than k ap store band karo un-companies k against action kion nhn laytay jin sy paisay laytay ho.

    i am from a village not a store owner as profession software engineer. in such small villages no one will afford a pharmacist and shop of 3Marlas . we have no doctor here the only people who are serving here are retired persons from Airforce or Army who are dispensers . i am not against law but what will all these medical stores owners do if their business closes

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