The Supreme Court granted leave to proceed with a Fundamental Rights petition filed by Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) against the procurement of medical supplies from unregistered private suppliers under the Indian Credit Line.

The petitioner had challenged the moves by the Ministry of Health to procure medical supplies from unregistered private suppliers through direct contracting and unsolicited bids.


While noting that serious doubts have arisen regarding the lawfulness of the impugned procurement transaction, the Supreme Court granted the following two interim reliefs: suspension of further importation of pharmaceuticals pertaining to the decision without obtaining a further order from the court after proving that the quality and safety requirements are satisfied and the procurement is lawful. Release for use the two consignments that have already reached Sri Lanka only after conducting the necessary tests and the National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) expressing its independent decision assuring the safety, quality, and efficacy of the already imported pharmaceuticals.


The TISL and its Executive Director, Ashala Nadishani Perera, filed this petition seeking an order preventing the Cabinet of Ministers and other officials from making any payments to Savorite Pharmaceuticals (Pvt) Limited and Kausikh Therapeutics Limited in respect of the purported procurement of any medicinal supplies.


The petitioners stated that the Minister of Health, Keheliya Rambukwella, has sought the approval of the Cabinet of Ministers to utilize the Indian Credit Line and other unspecified means of funding to maintain an uninterrupted supply of medicine, with the purported view of preventing acute shortages in medical supplies in government health institutions in Sri Lanka.


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