Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Mashelkar Report Version II: Wrong Again

Sudhir Krishnaswamy has authored an engaging article on the second Mashelkar Report tilted "Mashelkar Report Version II: Wrong Again". The article is forthcoming in the Economic and Political Weekly and can be downloaded here. The abstract is as follows:
"The government’s acceptance of the second version of the Technical Expert Group Report (hereafter ‘TEG Report’) headed by RA Mashelkar has been followed by a shrill sustained campaign that seeks to assert the truth of the Report’s claims by merely proclaiming it from every available forum. Any criticism of the Report is met with a strong chorus of denunciation usually ascribing poor intellectual abilities, bad motives, Orwellian sophistry or all of these. This campaign has assumed Goebbelsian proportions and poses a grave risk to rational and empirically grounded public policy formulation. I have commented elsewhere on the dangerous implications for public policy making that the process adopted by the first Technical Expert Group Report represents. In this essay, I respond to the TEG’s Second Report and argue: first, that its recommendations are not warranted by the TRIPs agreement; secondly, that it is not supported by the weight of academic opinion; and thirdly, that these conclusions do not rest on any reasonable assessment of the national interest in pharmaceutical policy. "

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