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Policy Matters

IMPCOPS urges govt to include Ayush streams into NCHRH

Chennai (PB): The Indian Medicine Practitioners Co-operative Pharmacy and Stores Ltd (IMPCOPS), Chennai, has taken strong exception to the exclusion of Ayush streams (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, Homoeopathy and Naturopathy) from the proposed draft bill of National Commission for Human Resources in Health (NCHRH).

IMPCOPS president Dr A Ramalingam said that the government of India has neglected the traditional systems of treatment of the country, and this deliberate action of the authorities will adversely affect the growth and development of the Indian systems. IMPCOPS will convey the views and suggestions of the manufacturers of all categories of Indian Medicine, in this respect, to the chairman of the parliamentary committee and to the Rajya Sabha Secretariat before the bill is introduced in Lok Sabha, he said.

“Ever since independence, the Ayush streams have been getting promotional encouragement from the government. The first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, had patronized the systems along with allopathy. Every year the Government allocates huge amount of money for the development of ISM. It has established several research institutions, manufacturing centres and hospitals all over India. Several acts and rules have been enacted in Parliament for the betterment of these Ayush streams. If this being the case, the exclusion of Ayush streams from the purview of NCHRH Bill is highly discriminatory and will not pave the way for conducive development of alternative systems in the country,” the IMPCOPS president, who is also a veteran Siddha doctor, said.

The Siddha system in Tamil Nadu and other streams elsewhere will get stunned if the proposed bill is passed in its present form. So, the Ayush streams need to be included in the NCHRH bill and suitable legislations pertaining to its growth must be made. “If it is excluded from the proposed NCHRH Bill, the future of Indian Medicine will be very bleak and uncertain and it will systematically degenerate the hitherto successful growth of alternative systems in India. In fact, India is the birth place of Ayush stream of medical disciplines. If it is not flourishing in India, where else will it flourish, he asked.

When asked whether he agrees with the idea of a separate Commission for Ayush human resources, Dr Ramalingam said first of all the Indian systems should be included in the NCHRH Bill, but a separate Commission is also welcome when these streams fully take root and enjoy the patronage of the Indian people. “But as of now, we strongly feel that separate Commission or Bill at this stage for the regulation of Ayush streams is unwarranted and it will lead to chaos and uncertainty,” he said.

The IMPCOPS president fully agreed with the argument of Ayurveda community in Kerala that the exclusion of Ayush streams would degenerate the growth and benefit of the country’s traditional methods of treatment. According to him researches and studies in the health system should not be in isolation both in allopathy and in Ayush streams. They must be complementary to each other. Both must grow under a single umbrella, he opined.

Dr Ramalingam expressed doubt over the support of allopathy doctors for the incorporation of Indian systems into the NCHRH Bill. He said there may be some hidden agenda to undermine the ISM System.

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