Pharma Education & Research (Amendment) Bill, 2021 to be tabled in LS: What it does, why it is important

The bill, which provides for granting the status of national importance to the six institutes in Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Hajipur, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Raebareli, will be moved by health minister Mansukh Mandaviya

FP Staff December 02, 2021 15:34:30 IST
Pharma Education & Research (Amendment) Bill, 2021 to be tabled in LS: What it does, why it is important

Mansukh Mandaviya takes charge as Union health minister. ANI

The Centre will on Thursday table 'The National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (Amendment) Bill 2021' in the Lok Sabha.

What does the bill do?

The bill, which provides for granting the status of national importance to the six institutes in Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Hajipur, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Raebareli, will be moved by  health minister Mansukh Mandaviya.

As per News18, the Centre had in March proposed granting the national importance tag to these institutes, which played a role in research during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bill will amend the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research Act, 1998.

Why is this Act important?

The National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research Act, 1998, was enacted to declare the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research at Mohali, Punjab, to be an institute of national importance and to provide for its incorporation and matters connected therewith.

The Act was subsequently amended in 2007 to empower the Central government to establish similar institutes in different parts of the country. Thereafter, six new institutes in Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Hajipur, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Raebareli were established during 2007-08.

It is to these institutes that the government is granting the status of national importance.

But why is this happening?

"A need is felt to bring clarity that the six institutes so established as well as any other similar institute to be established under the said Act shall be institutes of national importance," the statement of objects and reasons regarding the bill read.

In order to coordinate the activities of all such institutes, to ensure coordinated development of pharmaceutical education and research and maintenance of standards, etc., there is a need to establish a central body, to be called the Council, it noted.

As per PRS India, functions of the Council include: (i) advising on matters related to course duration, and admission standards in the institutes, (ii) formulating policies for recruitment, conditions of service, and fees, (iii) examining and approving development plans of the institutes, and (iv) examining annual budget estimates of the institutes for recommendations to the central government for allocation of funds.

Also, there is a need to rationalise the Board of Governors of each such institute and to widen the scope and number of courses run by such institutes, the statement of objects and reasons further read.

In Mandaviya's own words

Mandaviya in October said there is a need to strengthen research in the pharma sector and ensure close collaboration between research institutions and the industry. He also highlighted the progress made by the pharma sector in the country and said it has emerged as the 'Pharmacy of World'.

"...We are ahead in formulations, but are lacking behind in research. How do we move ahead in research? For this a road map should emerge from the lecture series organised by NIPER...," Mandaviya had said.

National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) should also come up with a roadmap on how they can collaborate with the industry. So that they can share their knowledge with the world, he said while virtually inaugurating the celebrations of the iconic week, under Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, by NIPER Mohali.

"I expect that a document is prepared on the roadmap to be taken by NIPERs for their future growth, Mandaviya had said.

With inputs from PTI

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