the Pharma companies drug war in India [Article]

The Indian Supreme Court’s decision to allow Indian makers of generic drugs to continue making copycat versions of the drug Gleevec (manufactured by Novartis) is lauded by Richard Stallman who has this to say:

Novartis responded to the decision by threatening to arbitrarily withhold other drugs from India, causing sick people there to die. Presumably these will be drugs which are in fact patented, drugs not affected by this decision. That shows this is not a self-protective reaction, but a murderous threat. In the absence of free exploitation treaties such as the WTO, India would respond to the threat by making those drugs locally. Novartis’ death threats are mere bluster, unless the WTO gives them force; and that reveals the murderous nature of the WTO. As for the pretense that the abuse of medical patents is “necessary” for the sake of research, we already know this is bogus. The big pharma companies spend more on advertising and corrupting doctors than on research, and little of their research goes into life-saving drugs anyway. Patents on drugs should be banned except in the wealthiest countries. There is a very simple solution: get rid of the WTO. It undermines democracy and it does harm to people in many other ways

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