In the wake of a nationwide call for a shutdown to protest the online sale of drugs, over 20,000 chemists' shops across Madhya Pradesh remained shut.
"The government has no regulation over the online supply of drugs," Bhopal Chemists' Association president Lalit Jain said. Patients across the state had to bear the brunt because of the strike as medical stores in Indore, Bhopal, Jabalpur and Gwalior and other major towns remained shut.
The state government has, however, made arrangements to ensure the availability of drugs. The public health and family welfare department has declared a situation of emergency, keeping in mind the condition of patients.
Medical stores located in the premises of major private hospitals would remain open. This arrangement would be applicable across the 51 districts of the state, a department official said.