Monday January 22, 2018

Maharashtra’s 55,000 chemists join all-India strike

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Mumbai:  Around 55,000 retail chemists and pharmacists in Maharashtra joined the day-long nationwide strike on Wednesday called by All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD), demanding a ban on online sale of medicines, an official said.

“All our retail chemists have joined the nationwide strike of over 800,000 chemists in all states and union territories, making it a a total success,” AIOCD President J.S. Shinde.

The main demand of the chemists is a ban on sale of medicines, including dangerous drugs, through online pharmacies on different websites, besides other issues.

However, Shinde assured that arrangements have been made in various hospitals to ensure uninterrupted availability of any emergency drugs for patients.

He claimed that the strike was “in public interest since the sale of medicines through internet was illegal, increases the risk of adverse drug reactions (side-effects), and would ease entry of low quality, unbranded and spurious medicines”.

Besides, it could pose a big threat of irrational use of medicines, lead to drug addiction among the youth, affect availability of medicines in rural India and prove a setback to the 800,000 plus chemists and pharmacists employing nearly eight million people, he added.

“With a 125 crore population, India is already facing huge problems of shortage of doctors practicing in modern medicine. Doctors of other branches like homoeopathy and ayurveda are also practicing and prescribing allopathic drugs. We just cannot compare ourselves with the developed countries which have necessary infrastructure and manpower for good governance,” Shinde said.

The AIOCD feels that in view of these issues, opening the doors of an e-pharmacy could be detrimental to the health of the population without studying the possible risksand threats associate with the move.

While online pharmacy business is going on illegally, the government authorities concerned are not taking due care or any action despite the complaints made by the AIOCD, Shinde rued.

Presently, online pharmacies accessible on internet supply I-Pills, MTP kits, anti-depressants, cough syrups and so on without confirming the authenticity of the prescriptions or the patients, he said.

(IANS)

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“Tiger Zinda Hai” faces controversies in Mumbai

"Tiger Zinda Hai" has run into a political controversy barely two days ahead of its scheduled December 22 release.

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Tiger Zinda Hai movie ratings and reviews
Tiger Zinda Hai movie ratings and reviews. IANS
  • Salman Khan’s movie “Tiger Zinda Hai” faces controversies
  • MNCS has warned cinema owners against booking all shows for Tiger Zinda Hai
  • 95% of all shows in all theaters in the state have been blocked for “Tiger Zinda Hai” for its Friday release

Mumbai, Dec 20, 2017: The upcoming Salman Khan starrer mega-budget film “Tiger Zinda Hai” has run into a political controversy barely two days ahead of its scheduled December 22 release.

While the Maharashtra Navnirman Chitrapat Sena (MNCS) has warned cinema owners against booking all shows for Tiger Zinda Hai and denying slots to two Marathi films, other parties like the Congress and the Shiv Sena also joined the controversy with their own party lines.

MNCS President Amey Khopkar told the media that the screening of the movie should not be at the cost of the Marathi films, “Deva” and “Gachhi”, which must be allotted suitable prime time slots.

“We are not against the release of any film, including Tiger Zinda Hai, our objection is why should all the slots be reserved for just one film and all others have no slots to exhibit their films,” Khopkar said.

On Tuesday, the MNCS shot off letters to all cinemas, demanding proper prime-time slots for the Marathi films, failing which it would agitate against the Salman Khan film.

Mumbai Congress President Sanjay Nirupam has come out in favour of “Tiger Zinda Hai”, but a party legislator Nitesh Rane has espoused the cause of the Marathi film industry, while the Shiv Sena has also toed a pro-Marathi line in this matter.

Terming the plight of Marathi film-makers “comparable to hawkers”, Sena MP Sanjay Raut demanded that they should be given equal treatment in releasing their films.

However, theatre owners are in a quandary since Tiger Zinda Hai is the first mega-budget film after several months, and probably the last this calendar year, after protests and threats pushed back the release of the much-anticipated Sanjay Leela Bhansali film “Padmavati” to 2018.

Khopkar said the MNCS, part of the Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), would not tolerate “the monopolising of theatres by Yashraj Films in this manner”.

“They should not forget that they do all their film shootings in Maharashtra. If this matter is not resolved amicably, we shall be forced to stop even their shoots,” Khopkar warned.

He termed it as tragic that Marathi film-makers “have to beg” for screens in their home state because big film companies book all cinema halls in advance for exhibiting their films.

According to MNCS activists, nearly 95 per cent of all shows in all theatres in the state have been blocked for “Tiger Zinda Hai” for its Friday release, leaving others with unviable options like early morning or late night shows which are poorly patronised.

Unconfirmed reports suggest that Yashraj Films has stipulated all theatres to have at least five shows of “Tiger Zinda Hai”, hoping to lure cinema buffs and Salman Khan fans in the Christmas holiday season. (IANS)

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