According to a notification issued by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on July 31, 2023, the production, sale, and distribution of ‘ketoprofen’ and ‘aceclofenac’, along with their formulations, for animal use is prohibited under section 26A of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 (23 of 40).
The recommendation of this ban was made by the Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB).
What are Ketoprofen and Aceclofenac?
These are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) which are frequently employed to relieve pain and inflammation in both humans and animals. However, when vultures and other raptor species consume treated carcasses, it is still observed to have adverse effects on their health.
Reasons for implementing this ban
- India experienced a significant decline in its vulture population during the 1990s, attributed to the use of diclofenac in cattle.
- Given their slow breeding rate and potential high mortality rates, without proper control measures, vultures could face the risk of extinction.
- Despite the subsequent ban on the drug, it will be a long time before the vulture population fully recovers.
Rich Diversity of Vulture Species in India
In India, there are nine vulture species, consisting of six resident species (white-rumped vulture, Indian vulture, slender-billed vulture, red-headed vulture, bearded vulture, Egyptian vulture) and three migratory species (cinereous vulture, griffon vulture, Himalayan vulture).
About Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB)
- DTAB is the apex authority for making statutory decisions on technical drug-related matters in India. It was established under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940.
- This authority operates as part of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) and operates under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
- Its primary function is to offer expert advice to the Central and State Governments concerning the administration of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940 and to fulfill other functions assigned by this Act.
Key takeaways for competitive examinations
- Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare: Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya