AHMEDABAD: Most of the chemists across Ahmedabad have taken a collective call to shut shop before 11 pm in order to make time for their families and friends, according to a recent report in TOI.
The decision has been taken by chemists associations in areas such as Satellite, Thaltej, Gurukul, Sola Vastrapur, and Bapunagar, among others. There are some 45-50 medical stores in the Satellite area, some 65 medical stores operating in Thaltej and Gurukul, 60 in Sola, 42 in Vastrapur and some 190 in Bapunagar.
Vikas Shah, owner of a medical store in Satellite area of the city told TOI,“Our shop is usually open till 12.30-1am and it is difficult to spend time with family, as we begin work as early as 8.30am. Recently, the issue was raised in a meeting of our association of chemists in Satellite area and we collectively decided to shut shop before 11 pm every day.”
A member of Ahmedabad Chemists Association (ACA) added that all the chemists in the following areas have taken a similar collective decision.
As per state food and drug control administration (FDCA) officials, if a medical store remains open during night hours, there has to be a qualified pharmacist present at the store.
“If it is a 24-hour chemist shop, we expect at least three pharmacists to be employed by the medical store. The idea is to have a qualified pharmacist under whose supervision medicines are sold,” H G Koshia, commissioner, FDCA – Gujarat told TOI.
Speaking about the alteration of timings, Bhupendra Patel, an ACA member and a chemist based in Thaltej, said, “It is difficult to make time for family and we hardly get to see our kids with such hectic timings. As such, most of our shops remain open for more than 12 hours and therefore, there isn’t a problem if we shut down an hour or two early.”
Jashvant Patel, chairman of Gujarat State Federation of Chemists and Druggists (GSFCDA) told TOI, “With most private hospitals having in-house pharmacies, standalone medical stores hardly do business during the night and therefore, there is no point in keeping stores open.”