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Two lakh Oxytocin ampoules seized from New Delhi Railway Station

The widely used variety of synthetic Oxytocin is a hormone injected into milch cattle to enhance milk production. As it is harmful for the cattle and those who consume the milk, the Centre banned its manufacture and sale by the private sector on February 8, 2018 but it was challenged in the court. From 2015 to 2018, private and public companies manufactured 16.5 crore ampoules of Oxytocin in the country. Oxytocin API is used in pharmaceuticals.

NEW DELHI, Feb 2: The Delhi Government authorities seized two lakh Oxytocin ampoules/vials of injection from the New Delhi Railway Station on Tuesday. Officially its value has been estimated at Rs 21 lakh, although illegal merchandise cannot be priced.

The illicit Oxytocin is a synthetic hormone injected into milch cattle to enhance milk output throughout the country. It is quite harmful for the livestock and has deleterious effects on those consuming the milk, like hormonal imbalance and neurological disorders. The veterinary injection is given whenever the cattle is to be milked. It is also illegally used in vegetable cultivation to raise the yield and reportedly by drug addicts too. However, Oxytocin API is also used in pharmaceuticals.

On receiving information that the consignment was coming from Bihar, drug control department authorities raided the parcel godown of the railway station at Ajmeri Gate. The consignees were named Yogender Kumar and Mohan Kumar, who did not turn up.

“Upon search of the said premises in the presence of the parcel supervisor, a huge stock of oxytocin injections, approximately 2 lakh ampoules or vials, were found stocked,” an official told reporters. “Apparently, the drugs were suspected to be of doubtful quality. Samples of these drugs have been collected for test and analysis and their report is awaited,” he said.

Investigation has started to find out the supply network of the chemical, which is in high demand in every nook and corner of the country and is administered indiscriminately although it is banned.

“A huge stock of Oxytocin injections approximately costing Rs 21 lakh has been seized from New Delhi Railway Station. The Intelligence cell of the Drugs Control Department is doing a great job,” Delhi's Home Minister tweeted.

The Centre had banned the manufacture and sale of Oxytocin by the private sector on February 8, 2018 but it was challenged in the court. During the year, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) seized 11.2 lakh ampoules of Oxytocin meant for use on animals and the Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) . From 2015 to 2018, private and public pharmacuetical companies manufactured and dispatched around 16.5 crore ampoules of Oxytocin in India.

In July 2018, a consignment of 70,000 injections of Oxytocin was seized from a house in Partap Nagar in Bathinda by a team of officials from the Punjab police and the health department. One person from Karnataka was arrested in Hyderabad in July 2019 and 1,920 bottles of Oxytocin were seized from him. In September, 2019, the Faridkot district police seized 9,300 injections.

What is Oxytocin : In the human body, Oxytocin is a neurohormone, synthetized primarily by the hypothalamus, but also in other brain areas, such as the pineal gland, that mediates numerous physiological effects, including milk ejection, parturition and maternal-foetal interactions, according to the NIH. Medically, it is administered in rare health issues relating to maternity, postpartum haemorrhage as also foetal seizures although it has some anaphylactic reactions. Brand Pitocin is also used for abortion.

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