Rajat Sharma

Take stringent action against those recycling masks, making fake sanitizers

AKB1411As stock markets crashed across the world, including India, after the World Health Organization declared Coronoavirus a pandemic affecting 118 countries, there is some good news: scientists in Israel have achieved a breakthrough in understanding the biological mechanism and qualities of the virus and are on the verge of inventing a vaccine. The development process involves a series of tests and it may take several months for carrying out tests and trials.

In India, the first Coronavirus death was reported from Karnataka, where a 76-year-old man with a travel history to Saudi Arabia, died due to this virus. Delhi government ordered closing of all schools, colleges and cinema halls till March 31. So far, 80 confirmed cases have been reported across India.

In the midst of this worldwide scare, some unscrupulous people have tried to make a killing in the market by recycling used masks and manufacturing fake sanitizers. They were taking advantage of rampant profiteering that is going on in the sale of masks and sanitizers.

I got a video of recycled masks being made on my WhatsApp on Thursday. On getting it checked through our reporter, we found that these were seized by police in Bhiwandi, Maharashtra. The local police have arrested one Imran, who claimed that he was asked by one Amit Thakker to dispose of these recycled masks by throwing them away on the roadside. According to Imran, Amit Thakker, who used to deal in electronics, had started recycling used masks on a large scale, and had been selling 50,000 to one lakh masks daily. When the video of this shady business went viral, he asked Imran to dispose them of and that was when the police stepped in.

In Manesar, near Haryana’s Gurugram, fake sanitizers were being made in a factory that used to make car lubricants. Blue coloured chemical filled in tubs, were being packed into bottles labelled as ‘Viro’ sanitizers. The Food and Drugs department raided the factory and seized nearly 5,000 bottles.

Similarly, in Srinagar, drug inspectors raided and seized more than 50 litres of fake sanitizers being prepared with thinner, glycerine, water and lemon flavour.

People who indulge in such nefarious activities are enemies of society, and they should be given the most stringent punishment at a time when the entire world is striving to fight the deadly coronavirus. These people are committing a sin. I have sent details of such raids to the higher authorities and I expect the government to take exemplary measures against those who are playing with people’s lives.

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