Reliance Life Sciences allowed to participate in tender involving supply of drugs and medicines

Bombay High Court: A Division bench comprising of Anoop V. Mohta and Bharati H. Dangre, JJ. heard a petition filed in relation to a tender process for supply of various drugs including one Human Anti-Hemophilic Factor VIII, issued by the respondent State in which the petitioners participated. The tender restricted participation from manufacturers/ distributors for the product for which it had been found guilty of malpractice, misconduct or had been debarred/ blacklisted by Maharashtra’s Public Health Department or any other local authority or Central or State Government organization.

The petitioners received a communication that they had been blacklisted for Anti-Hemophilic Factor VIII by State Health Society, Bihar. The petitioners responded with a copy of the order, stating that they had been “de-blacklisted” but de-registered for the next five years for not being able to supply required quantity of AHF within prescribed time. However, the aforementioned explanation was not considered and the petitioners were denied participation in the bid even though they were eligible to.

The Court held that the communication debarring petitioners in the tender process was unjust and unsustainable. De-registration could not be considered as indicative of malpractice or misconduct and there was no surviving case even of blacklisting. Therefore, the petitioners were held entitled to participate in the tender process and the respondents were directed to consider the petitioner’s bid as responsive. [Reliance Life Sciences Pvt. Ltd. v. State of Maharashtra, 2017 SCC OnLine Bom 7266, dated 02.08.2017]

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