Jun 03, 2020


Why has it been in news for some months?

The Union Health Ministry in 2018 notified a ban on private firms from manufacturing and selling oxytocin on the ground that it wanted to restrict the responsibility of supplying the drug to Karnataka Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Ltd (KAPL), a Karnataka-based public sector manufacturer to avoid its misuse in the veterinary field. 

Delhi High Court quashed the ban on various grounds, including that it lacked scientific basis.

GOI appealed the decision at the Supreme Court, arguing that the KAPL has built up the capacity to manufacture and supply the required quantity of the drug here. 

Apex court refered the matter to a larger bench.

What is Oxytocin?

Oxytocin, also called love hormone, is an essential and life-saving drug frequently used for women during childbirth, for the induction and augmentation of labour, to make childbirth safe and prevent death resulting from postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) -bleeding. PPH contributes 38% ‒ approximately a total of 32,000 maternal deaths‒ of all maternal deaths occurring every year in India. Nearly 4 women die every hour in India from complications developed during childbirth, with heavy blood loss caused by haemorrhage being a major factor.

Then why was it banned?

What happens now?

Recently a three judge apex court bench took up the issue.