Overview of Drug License Wholesale Retail

A drug license in India is a registration certificate that the Food Safety and Drug Administration issues to a business that produces, distributes, sells, or stores pharmaceutical products, such as chemicals and medications. The Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940, along with its implementing rules and regulations, governs drug licenses. In order to ensure compliance with state government rules, a drug license is required. Different kinds of licenses are granted within the drug license category. Which msinly includes manufacturing licenses for drug production facilities, retail licenses for pharmacies or chemist shops, and wholesale licenses for drug distributors. Applicants must meet several requirements in order to apply for a drug license, such as maintaining Good Production Practices (GMP) for production units, hiring qualified staff, and maintaining a suitable infrastructure. The Food Safety and Drug Administration State Drug Control Departments are in charge of issuing drug licenses. If the conditions for drug licenses are not met, there may be fines and jail time in addition to the license being suspended or revoked.

Who issues a Drug License in India?

Drug licenses in India have been issued by State Food and Drug Administrations or State Drug Control Departments as per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940 rules and regulations which are enforced by the state-level regulatory bodies, which are also responsible for granting Drug Licenses. Rules may vary State by State based on a particular procedure and prerequisites for acquiring a drug license, but all licenses are required to follow the guidelines established by the government to guarantee high-quality, safe products.

Types of Drug License in India

Agile Regulatory Checklist Drug Manufacturing License

Agile Regulatory Checklist Drug Wholesale Retail License

What is Drug Manufacturing License?

A Drug Manufacturing License in India is a legal authorization issued by the State licensing authority (SLA). Allowing pharmaceutical wholesalers, distributors companies and manufacturers to produce and distribute medicines in compliance with the applicable laws and regulations. A Drug license is mandatory to ensure that a drug manufacturing facility or wholesale/retail facility meets the required quality and safety standards and maintains the necessary infrastructure and expertise to produce pharmaceutical products safely and effectively in India.

Drug Wholesale Retail License

In India, a drug wholesale/retail license is a legally recognized document that authorizes a business to distribute pharmaceutical products or medications both wholesale and retail. It is granted by the State Drug Control Department. For a pharmaceutical wholesaler or retailer to ensure that product distribution complies with legal requirements for public safety and government-established quality standards, they must get a Drug Wholesale/Retail License.

Types and Form Name of Drug Wholesale Retail License

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20 for the sale of Allopathic drugs by retail other than those specified in Schedule C, C(1) and X

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-A for the sale of restricted Allopathic drugs by retail other than those specified in Schedule C, C(1), and X.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-B for wholesale of Allopathic drugs other than those specified in Schedule C, C(1) and X.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-C for the sale of Homoeopathic medicines by retail.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-D for the sale of Homoeopathic Medicines by wholesale.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 21 for retail sale of Allopathic drugs specified in Schedule C & C(1).

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 21-B is issued for wholesale of Allopathic drugs specified in Schedule C & C(1).

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 21-A for retail sale of restricted Allopathic drugs specified in Schedule C (I).

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-F for retail sale of drugs specified in Schedule 'X'.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Form 20-G is issued for the wholesale of drugs Specified in Schedule 'X'.

Benefit of Drug Wholesale Retail Certificate

 Drug License holders are legally authorized to engage in pharmaceutical-related activities, ensuring that they operate within the bounds of the law and regulatory framework.  

 Holding a valid Drug License enhances the credibility and trustworthiness of the business or individual, assuring customers, partners, and stakeholders that the pharmaceutical products meet required quality and safety standards. 

 A Drug License provides entry and access to the vast Indian pharmaceutical market, allowing license holders to distribute and sell their products to a broad customer base.  

 License holders have the opportunity to expand their business within the regulated pharmaceutical industry, leading to potential growth and increased market share.   

 Licensed businesses often enjoy a competitive advantage, as they demonstrate their commitment to quality and safety, which can attract customers and partners seeking trustworthy suppliers.  

 A Drug License may facilitate the import and export of pharmaceutical products, enabling international trade and collaborations within the industry.  

Regulatory authorities monitor licensed entities to ensure the safety and integrity of the pharmaceutical supply chain, reducing the risk of fake or substandard drugs entering the market.

Documents for Wholesale Retail License

Agile Regulatory Checklist Application Form: A duly filled and signed application form as prescribed by the respective licensing authority.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Covering Letter: A covering letter stating the purpose of the application and the type of license being sought.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Premises Documents: Proof of ownership or rental agreement for the premises where drug-related activities will be conducted.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Site plan/layout of the premises: A detailed layout plan of the premises will be required.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Technical Person Details: Information about the technical staff employed, including their qualifications and experience.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Equipment and Machinery Details: A list of equipment and machinery used in the manufacturing or storage of drugs.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Manufacturing/Wholesale/Retail Details: Specific documents for the type of license being applied for:

  1. For Manufacturing License: Details about the manufacturing process, including layout plans and specifications of the manufacturing premises.
  2.  For Wholesale License: Details about the storage facilities and arrangements for proper storage of drugs.
  3.  For Retail License: Information about the retail premises, including the size, storage facilities, and location.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Quality Control methods: Details regarding the equipment and setup used in the laboratory, among other quality control methods.

Agile Regulatory Checklist A Partnership Deed or Certificate of Incorporation that has been notarized: In the event of a partnership firm or an MCA registered company, a Partnership Deed or Certificate of Incorporation.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Affidavit: The applicant must provide an affidavit attesting to the accuracy of the product submitted via the application. Fee Receipt: Proof of payment of the prescribed application and license fees.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Educational Qualifications: Educational qualifications and experience details of the authorized signatory or proprietor.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Other Statutory Permissions: Any other statutory permission required for drug-related activities, such as the No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Pollution Control Board.

Agile Regulatory Checklist Declaration of Previous Licenses: A declaration of any previous drug licenses held by the applicant.

Registration Process of Drug License

Step 1: Eligibility Check: Ensure that your product meets the eligibility criteria for obtaining a Drug Manufacturing, wholesale, or retail license. Eligibility requirements may include qualifications, premises standards, and other specific criteria set by the Drug Licensing Authority in your state.  

Step 2: Application Form: Obtain the prescribed application form for a Drug Wholesale/Retail or Manufacturing License from the relevant state authority or online portal.  

Step 3: Document Preparation: Gather and prepare all the necessary documents, as mentioned in the application form and as required by the State licensing authority.  

Step 4: Premises Compliance: Ensure that the premises where you intend to conduct a Drug manufacturing, wholesale, or retail business comply with the necessary standards and guidelines.  

Step 5: Technical Staff and Qualifications: Hire a registered pharmacist as a competent person in order to handle the drug production and distribution-related activities.  

Step 6: Affidavit: An applicant needs to prepare an affidavit by declaring that the information provided in the application is true and is as per the standard.

Step 7: Application Submission: An applicant needs to submit the application form along with the mandatory documents offline to the state licensing authority or online through the portal.  

Step 8: Inspection: After receiving the application, the Drug Inspector will visit the applicant's premises to inspect and assess compliance with the relevant regulations and quality standards.  

Step 9: Review and Verification: The licensing authority will review the application, documents, and inspection report. The state FDA application reviewing team may ask for additional information or documents if required.  

Step 10: Grant of License: If the authorities are satisfied with the application and find that the applicant meets all of the requirements, you will be rewarded with the issuance of a Drug License.  

Note: License Renewal: Ensure that you renew the drug license as per the prescribed schedule to continue your operations legally.

Role of Agile Regulatory

Agile Regulatory have a deep knowledge of the regulatory process and the specific requirements for obtaining a drug license whether it is for manufacturing, wholesale or retail. We always used to stay updated with the latest notifications.  

Application Preparation: Agile Regulatory helps clients to prepare all the necessary documents and information required for the application which includes filling out the application forms correctly, compiling the supporting documents and ensuring the registration process.  

Compliance Assessment: We conduct thorough assessments of the client's premises and operations to ensure that they meet the regulatory and quality standards required for a drug license.

Liaison with Authorities: Agile Regulatory acts as an intermediate between our clients and the relevant authority. We communicate with the state licensing authorities on behalf of the client for application updates, responding to queries etc. 

Regulatory Updates: We keep our clients informed about any changes in drug licensing regulations and requirements which help them to adapt to evolving regulatory standards.  

Inspection Support: In the event of an inspection by Drug Inspectors, Agile Regulatory provides guidance and support during the inspection to ensure that the client's premises and operations are in compliance with the regulations.  

License Renewal and Compliance: Agile Regulatory also assists in the timely renewal of licenses, which ensures that the client continues to meet the necessary requirements for the duration of their operations.


In India, drug licenses are categorized into different types such as retail drug license, wholesale drug license, manufacturing drug license, and loan license.


A drug wholesale/retail license in India is a legal authorization granted by the respective State Drug Control Authority or the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) that allows individuals or entities to engage in the wholesale or retail distribution of drugs within a specified jurisdiction.


Any individual or entity involved in the wholesale or retail distribution of drugs, including wholesalers, stockists, distributors, and pharmacies, needs to obtain a drug wholesale/retail license in India.


The eligibility criteria for obtaining a drug wholesale/retail license include having the necessary qualifications, infrastructure, and compliance with the requirements outlined in the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, of 1940, and the respective state regulations.


To apply for a drug wholesale/retail license in India, one needs to submit an application along with the required documents to the respective State Drug Control Authority or the CDSCO.


Commonly required documents for applying for a drug wholesale/retail license include proof of ownership or tenancy of premises, qualifications of the applicant, layout plan of the premises, appointment of a registered pharmacist, and various statutory declarations.


It usually takes 45-60 days to get a license.

The fees for obtaining a drug wholesale/retail license in India vary depending on the state regulations and the type of license applied for.

Free Consultation by Expert

Working Process

How we work for our valued customers.


Raise an Enquiry

Raise an Enquiry to get a call back from one of the expert advisor to discuss the specific compliance related toyour business.

Dedicate Manager

Confirm the project, we'll assign you a dedicated manager along with the technical person to take over the project end to end.

Real Time Update

You'll get a dashboard to track the ongoing project along with real time update& 24*7 customer service availability.

Project Completed

We'll share the issued certificate in online as well as in hard copy along with the login credentials once project is completed.