BENGALURU: Karnataka chief minister B S Yediyurappa on Tuesday took senior government officials to task and warned them they will not be spared in an inquiry being constituted over the allegations of black marketing and seizures of the vital Covid-19 treatment drug Remdesivir.
Yediyurappa held a meeting of senior officials from the health department and other officers to take stock of the Remdesivir drug on Tuesday.
During the course of his interaction, officials from the health department notified the CM that action has been initiated against people who have been identified in black marketing of the drug.
However, a peeved Yediyurappa countered the officials’ claims by stating that he has already received reports from the intelligence and police department that officials from the top to bottom in the health department and district administration are involved in black marketing.
“As per my information and the reports received, a lot of the drugs are being sold in the black and also ferried to other states. You (officials) try to cover it up and speak as if you do not know about it. I am going to order a comprehensive inquiry into this entire affair and you (officials) will face the consequences ,” he charged.
Yediyurappa said the reports received by him suggested that not just one or two officials but an entire band of bureaucrats have indulged in corruption and misused the Remdesivir vials supplied to the state.
“At a time when the people are suffering, you officials have tried to misuse the system and indulged in corruption. I will not spare a single one of you and when the inquiry report comes, the truth will surface,” he said.
While one of the officials tried to defend the department by claiming all officials are working day and night to sort out the problem, Yediyurappa was further enraged and said: “Am I accusing you of not working overtime? I am asking as to how the drug is being sold in the black market? When we are facing a shortage of the drug, Remdesivir is being sold in the black, who is responsible?”
Earlier, at the high court, the state government has said Karnataka’s requirement is estimated to be about 4 lakh vials for the month of May. Of this, the centre has allocated 3.41 lakh vials and Karnataka is receiving 44,000 every day.