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Rid Pharma MD, wife get bail in toxic paracetamol case

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Health Desk—3rd April, 2017: Managing Director of Rid Pharmaceuticals Ltd Mizanur Rahman and his wife Sheuli Rahman on Sunday obtained bail after they surrendered before a Dhaka court seeking bail in the case filed over the deaths of 28 children in 2009.

Judge M Atoar Rahman of the Drug Court passed the order after they appeared before it as per the High Court order.

Earlier on March 9, the HC directed five officials of Rid Pharmaceuticals Ltd, who were acquitted in a case filed for manufacturing toxic paracetamol syrup, to surrender before the trial court within seven days.

Three other fugitive accused are Rid Pharma's director Abdul Gani, and pharmacists Mahbubul Islam and Enamul Haque.

The government in January filed an appeal with the HC, challenging the lower court verdict.

From June to August in 2009, 28 children across the country died of renal failures caused by the intake of the paracetamol syrup and suspension allegedly manufactured by Rid Pharma.

On July 22, 2009, the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) sealed off Rid's factory in BSCIC area of Brahmanbaria following wide media coverage of the children's death, and findings of Dhaka Shishu (Children) Hospital physician Prof Mohammad Hanif that Rid Pharma's Temset had toxic substance.

In August that year, Shafiqul Islam, then superintendent of the Drug Administration, filed the case with the Drug Court and only five prosecution witnesses testified after the court indicted the five accused in March 2011.

The Drug Court on November 28 last year acquitted all the five, saying the prosecution utterly failed to prove the charge against them .