A former AIIMS doctor and renowned neurologist Dr. Mohammad Altamash Hussain (42) has been arrested from Ghaziabad, UP for hoarding and selling life-saving injections in the black market at exorbitant rates. Two of his accomplices, Kumail Akram, resident of Kaila Bhatta, and Jazib Ali, resident of Delhi, Karol Bagh were also arrested.
Police recovered 70 Remdesivir injections, two Actemra injections, and 36 lakh rupees in cash from his possession. According to the cops, Altamash had earned Rs. 36 lakhs in just one day by selling Remdesivir in the black market, something that he has been doing since the outset of the second wave.
Remdesivir costs around 3000-5000 (although Cadila recently slashed its price to Rs 899 per injection), and was being sold in black for 40-50K. Actemra costs around Rs. 40K and is not available over the counter. It is being sold in the Delhi black-market at Rs. 1-2 lakh.
A few days ago a victim informed the Delhi Crime Branch about a gang dealing in the clandestine sale of drugs. He had bought a Remdesivir injection from this gang for Rs. 48,000/-. Undercover cops followed up the lead and set up surveillance. Detectives in plainclothes contacted Akram, an associate of the Doctor, and told him that they need 70 Remdesivir injections. They agreed on a price of Rs 38,000 per injection and the accused was apprehended when he came to deliver the goods.
Upon questioning, Akram led them to Ali, who spilled the beans about the involvement of Dr. Altamash in the racket. Altamash lives in the Nizamuddin area of Delhi and is the CEO of Hyatt Corporate Sector Insurance and Health. He also operates a clinic in Ghaziabad, and regularly appears on TV as a health expert and delivers lectures to medical students in various medical colleges. He did his MBBS from Lucknow’s King George’s Medical University (KGMC) and FIRCP from AIIMS (New Delhi). The cops said till a few months ago, he worked as a guest doctor at AIIMS. Akram runs a clothes business and Ali supplies face masks.
When the Police reached Dr. Altamash’s clinic, the doctor tried to threaten the Police mentioning his high-profile contacts and boasted that he has ‘relations with all the prominent leaders in the country and ministers at central government’. He later led them to his car where he had stocked the vials. During interrogation, he claimed to have treated both IAS and IPS officers and even film stars during the corona period. The Police also seized a luxury car owned by Dr. Altamash and two motorcycles.
City Superintendent of Police, Nipun Agarwal told the media that greed led Altamash to the illicit sale of the drugs that were being procured from medical stores using his own prescriptions. They were then being sold to patients in need at sky-high prices. He added that there is a nexus involved in it and everybody was getting a share of the profit.
The Doctor admitted to having paid 50 Lakhs to others since the second wave began. The accused are being questioned to identify co-conspirators involved in the racket since the cops suspect the involvement of officials and employees at AIIMS who might be involved with this gang. Police teams are also examining the possibility of more such gangs involved in this illicit trade.
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