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Covid-19: Ludhiana faces shortage of medicines

Crisis: Most govt hospitals run out of supplies; ‘delivery boys being harassed by cops’

Updated: Mar 26, 2020 23:06 IST

By Mohit Khanna, Hindustan Times Chandigarh

People queue up to buy medicines at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital in Ludhiana on Thursday. (HT PHOTO)

The nationwide lockdown to curtail the spread of deadly coronavirus has led to the shortage of medicine in Ludhiana.

Serpentine queue of residents was witnessed outside the pharmacy of Dayanand Medical College and Hospital.

Arjun, a resident of Amarpura, whose father was discharged on Thursday from the civil hospital, Ludhiana, said that he could find only some medicines at the drug store in the hospital.

“I was told that the remaining medicines will be available at Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMC&H). But cops at a Naka told me to go back and buy medicine tomorrow (Friday). I do not know what to do,” said Arjun.



“A mask which is costing around ₹5 to the manufacturer is being sold for anything between ₹20 to ₹50. I tried to order something online, but it was not delivered. I had to actually look for multiple medicines for my mother, who was treated for breast cancer and my father, who takes medicines for diabetes and blood pressure,” said Vishal, a resident of Civil Line.

While a woman identified as Pinki from Bhattian area of the city said that she somehow managed to visit the hospital despite curfew. l collapsed in front of the OPD reception counter at the civil hospital and was left unattended.

“I was exhausted and began to feel giddy. I collapsed. I do not know what happened later,” said Pinki.

Ludhiana District Chemist Association president GS Chawla blamed the police for the problem.

“Police is being overly strict on us. They are posing a lot of problem in the supply chain. Our delivery boys are being stopped at police nakas. Some of them are treated badly. We are working for the society. A diabetic, hypertensive, all these people need regular supply of medicines. But if police continue to harass us, we will not be able to match the demand,” said Chawla.

He said that around 400 wholesaler and 2500 retailers’ chemists are operating in the city.

Some respite for city residents

Zonal Licensing Authority (ZLA) Kulwinder Singh said that a meeting was conducted with the officials of the administration on Thursday, following which 150 chemists, 30 wholesalers in Pindi Street along with 150 deliverymen were issued curfew passes. Besides, the government has put a cap on masks and no chemist could sell the three layer facemask for over ₹16, he said.

700-litre sanitiser for district health dept

ZLA Kulwinder Singh said that 700-litre sanitizer has been provided to the health department of Ludhiana. It will be used for disinfecting the hospitals and other buildings which are vulnerable to infection.

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