A Drug in Need to Save Human Beings - Editorial

India in the Pharma sector

India dominates a crucial position in the world's pharmaceuticals segment, as India is the strongest provider of generic drugs worldwide.

The Indian pharmaceutical industry is responsible for over 50% of worldwide demand for varied vaccines and medicines, 40% of generic demand in North America. and 25% of all medicine in the United Kingdom (UK).

Currently, over 80% of the antiretroviral drugs & medicines used worldwide to combat or fight AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) are fulfilled by Indian pharmaceutical companies.

The Indian pharmaceuticals segment is the world’s third-largest with regards to the volume and thirteenth-largest concerning the Value. Indian Pharmaceutical sector travelled miles and has established itself as a global manufacturer, supplier and important research hub.

A Drug in Need to Save Human Beings

Background Context

Very recently United States President Mr Donald Trump, mentioned that he asked Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi to lift India’s sanction on hydroxychloroquine tablets in order that the concerned drug can reach to and treat America’s COVID-19 patients before the pandemic makes it horrible situation.

A day earlier to this event, India’s Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) had obstructed the export of the anti-malarial drug, which the United States believes that more or less the hydroxychloroquine tablets, to be the game-changer in the US’s fight against the novel coronavirus.

According to the reports, the US president’s request is currently under review on the table of the high-level Group of Ministers (GoM) that closely monitors, assess the nations COVID-19 response movements and activities.

Brazil has also requested India to lift the prohibition on hydroxychloroquine export — India is one among the global principal or leader in the manufacturing and supply of the hydroxychloroquine drug.

The Group of Ministers (GoM) lead by Union Minister of Defence must take under consideration the interests of all stakeholders in the country before concluding to the decision of lifting the export ban hydroxychloroquine tablets.

Hydroxy-chloroquine against COVID-19

  • The drug demonstrates antiviral properties in detection against coronaviruses, and to be more precise, and specifically, the mess of SARS-CoV-2 [the virus that causes COVID-19].
  • Furthermore, the study proposes that prophylaxis (treatment is given to avoid disease) using the hydroxy-chloroquine drug at appropriate and approved doses could stop SARS-CoV-2 infection and should help to enhance viral shedding.
  • Clinical trials are still under observation and research in the Republic of China to understand whether the drug, if possible, can often be used for treatment.

About Hydroxychloroquine

  • Hydroxy-chloroquine is an oral medicine utilized in the ministration of widespread autoimmune diseases like atrophic arthritis. Autoimmune diseases are those in which the body’s own immune system goes against and attacks already healthy cells. This is a very anomalous behaviour of the human body's immune system.
  • Hydroxychloroquine, the very popular anti-parasitic drug has been available in the market since the 1940s. It’s been utilised in the treatment of the treat malaria.
  • Hydroxychloroquine is the derivative of chloroquine and has at least side-effects.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis is the chronic inflammatory bone related disease or disorder affecting limbs joints.
  • Chloroquine is effective by boosting the level of haem or heme, a material toxic to the parasite causing the malarial in the Human blood. It's reported that this kills the parasite responsible for spreading the disease and discontinues or hampers the infection from spreading.

ICMR Recommends Use of Hydroxy-Chloroquine

  • Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) is the prime responsible and dedicated institution in India for the formulation, coordination, accountability and promotion of biomedical research.
  • Its directive is to undertake, prepare, coordinate and conduct medical research for the collective advantage of the Indian society, transition medical revolution and innovations into usable products/processes and enabling their deployment into the general public health system effectively.
  • The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) suggested the utilization of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a precautionary for asymptomatic healthcare staff and contacts of individuals who are infected by the virus.
  • The ICMR’s decision and recommendations on the broader use of the Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) drug will, reportedly, depend upon further deep research.

Use of Hydroxy-Chloroquine yielded better results

  • At a times, scientists and research located on the other part of the hemisphere or other part of the planet have triggered interest in the more elaborative use of anti-malarial medicine.
  • An analysis and examination by Chinese researchers, for example, demonstrated that the drug accelerates the recovery of COVID-19 patients who had tormented from pneumonia.
  • Series of experiments on the drug has also shown promising outcomes in France. Some medical experts and practitioners have proposed more analysis, experiments and assessments before hydroxychloroquine is portrayed as a definitive cure for COVID-19.
  • However, some of the early opposers of the Hydroxychloroquine drug, ironically including the United States, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have now made a U-turn on its decision and instead praised and suggested the use of Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) drug in required situations.
  • Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) upheld as a COVID-19 pain reliever or tranquillize, by all accounts, seems to be an ongoing process.
  • Although in a world entangled in a miserable fight against COVID-19, confirmed reports of the first success of the Hydroxychloroquine drug have given hope especially in the United States, the country hit severely by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • In such a condition, it's important and crucial that India’s resolution on the US request to provide Hydroxychloroquine drug be an informed and appraised one.


Indian pharmaceutical manufacturing companies and organizations have the lowest in prices in the entire world – lowest than that of the U.S. manufacturers and almost half the market price in Europe manufacturers.

As the nation decides to accentuate the fight against the novel coronavirus in identified hotspots, the GoM’s decision must be supported and backed by consultations with the range of domain experts – scientists from the medical field, public health practitioner, microbiologist and foreign policy experts and representatives of the pharma industry and educators from the domain.

India should boost considerable invest in the field of microbiology and biotechnology. India’s biotechnology sector, inclusive of biopharmaceuticals, bioinformatics, bio-services, bio-agriculture and related bio-industry and is predicted to grow at the broader rate of around 30% annually and may reach a turnover over $100 billion by 2025.

To safeguard the health security of Indian masses, the improvement and reintroduction of Research and Development and public sector API manufacturers is important. For instance, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) should be promoted to take a position and pour needed finances in Research and Development. 

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