The Government has created new department – Department of Pharmaceuticals under the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers. National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) chairman Ashok Kumar has taken as the secretary in the newly-created department of pharmaceuticals.

The department of Pharmaceuticals would handle policy issues relating to the pharmaceutical sector. Drug pricing will continue to be the prerogative of the autonomous drug price watchdog NPPA. With Mr Kumar, the longest-serving chairman of the drug regulator, joining the department, the government would soon appoint a new chief for NPPA.

The Department will be responsible for the following:

  • Drugs and Pharmaceuticals, excluding those specifically allotted to other departments
  • Promotion and co-ordination of basic, applied and other research in areas related to the pharmaceutical sector.
  • Development of infrastructure, manpower and skills for the pharmaceutical sector and management of related information.
  • Education and training including high end research and grant of fellowships in India and abroad, exchange of information and technical guidance on all matters relating to pharmaceutical sector.
  • Promotion of public – private – partnership in pharmaceutical related areas.
  • International co-operation in pharmaceutical research, including work related to international conferences in related areas in India and abroad.
  • Inter-sectoral coordination including coordination between organizations and institutes under the Central and State Governments in areas related to the subjects entrusted to the Department.
  • Technical support for dealing with national hazards in pharmaceutical sector.
  • All matters relating to National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority including related functions of price control/monitoring.
  • All matters relating to National Institutes for Pharmacy Education and Research.
  • Planning, development and control of, and assistance to, all industries dealt with by the Department.
  • Bengal Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Limited.
  • Hindustan Antibiotics Limited.
  • Indian Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited.
  • Karnataka Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Limited.
  • Rajasthan Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited.


Issues related to clinical trials and new drugs for marketing will continue to be dealt with by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI).

The funding of research through soft loans and grants remains the prerogative of the Department of Science & Technology (DST), while the Committee for the Purpose of Supervision and Control of Experimentation on Animals (CPSCEA) will continue to regulate experiments on animals.