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Posted at: Jan 12, 2019, 6:54 AM; last updated: Jan 12, 2019, 6:54 AM (IST)

Faulty hip implants: SC closes case against J&J

Says no need to keep PIL alive as govt to give Rs 3 lakh-1.22 cr compensation

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 11

Taking cognisance of a compensation scheme proposed by the Centre, the Supreme Court on Friday disposed of a PIL alleging “faulty” hip implants manufactured by US-based pharma company Johnson and Johnson that got fitted into bodies of 14,525 Indian patients.

A Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi perused the response of the Union Health Ministry, which said that a scheme had been formulated by it to ensure proper compensation to the victims of faulty hip implants.

The PIL filed by one Arun Goenka alleged that “faulty” and “deadly” hip implants had been fitted into the bodies of 14,525 Indian patients who underwent replacement surgeries since 2005.

The Bench, also comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, said in view of the Centre’s decision to provide compensation between Rs 3 lakh and 1.22 crore to the victims, there was no need to keep the PIL alive.

Disposing of the PIL, the top court said the government should give adequate publicity to the scheme to ensure that its benefits were reaped by victims. The court had in October 2018 asked the Union Health Ministry about the actions, if any, taken after an expert committee found the pharmaceutical giant guilty of “medical negligence”.

The petition sought directions to the Centre and Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation to take effective measures to save lives of those who had undergone “DePuy ASR hip implant surgeries and would be unknowingly living a life in hell, if alive or may be dead, due to the negligent acts of respondents.”

It had demanded an SIT probe into the matter and effective measures for implementation of immediate actions to save lives of patients of DePuy ASR Implants. It had highlighted that the company had to pay $4.40 billion to over 9,000 victims of faulty implants in the US while there was nothing of that sort in India.

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