Recently, the Delhi High Court has ordered authorities to take action against the “rampant use of Oxytocin hormone in the dairy colonies in the national Capital.

Key highlights of judgment

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice and one other Justice heard a plea over the “rampant use of Oxytocin hormone in the dairy colonies, packaged in white plastic bottles with a red or silver cap”.

  • The drug was banned by the Central government in April 2018.

The court noted that administering the hormone, which results in increased milk production, amounts to animal cruelty and is, therefore, an offence.

Department of Drugs Control, Government of NCT of Delhi (GNCTD)

  • The Drugs Control Organisation became an independent Department after January 1986 with the Drugs Controller as Head of the Department.

It is enforcing the provisions of the following statutes, enacted by the Government of India:

  • Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules made there under.
  • Drugs & Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.
  • Drugs (Prices Control) Order, 2013.

HC directs the Department of Drugs Control, Government of NCT of Delhi (GNCTD), to conduct weekly inspections and ensure that all cases of spurious Oxytocin usage or possession are registered under Section 12 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals  (PCA)Act, 1960, and Section 18(a) of the Drugs and Cosmetics  (DC) Act, 1940.”

  • Section 12 of PCA Act, 1960:  penalizes practicing of phooka or doom dev (introducing air or any substance into the female organ of a milch Animal) or any other operation being performed upon any cow or other milch animal, to improve its lactation. This is injurious to the health of the animal.
  • Section 18 (a) of DC  Act, 1940:  Disclosure of the name of the manufacturer, etc. – Every person, not being the manufacturer of a drug or cosmetic or his agent for the distribution thereof, shall, if so required, disclose to the Inspector the name, address and other particulars of the person from whom he acquired the drug or cosmetic.

The Intelligence Department of Delhi Police is directed by HC to identify the sources of such spurious Oxytocin production, packaging, and distribution and take action under the law.

The court directed that dairies should be “relocated” to areas having proper sewage, drainage, biogas plant, ample open space for the cattle to move around, and enough grazing area as it was reported nine designated dairy colonies in Delhi were ‘bad’ and to relocated dairies located next to the Sanitary Landfill Sites (SLFs).

What is Oxytocin?

  • Oxytocin also known as ‘love hormone’ 
  • It is secreted by the pituitary glands of mammals during sex, childbirth, lactation, or social bonding.
  • It can be chemically manufactured and sold by pharma companies for use during childbirth.
  • It is administered either as an injection or a nasal solution.
  • Itis a cognisable offence under Section 12 of PCA Act, 1960.

Ban of Oxytocin

  • It was banned by the Central government in April 2018.
  • Though Centre allowed only one public sector undertaking (PSU), the Karnataka Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Limited (KAPL), to produce Oxytocin to meet the needs of the entire country.
  • Reason for the ban of Oxytocin: It was being misused on milch cattle to increase yield, which not only affects the health of the cattle but also humans who consumed the milk.

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