Wrapping up Ayurveda Congress in New Delhi, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Saturday asked young scientists and researchers to take up the challenge of making Ayurveda acceptable to the modern world as an affordable healthcare system.
“There are no doubts about the power and efficacy of Ayurvedic products, but we live in a period of evidence-based medicine; our drugs need to pass through the rigour of scientific validation to be marketable globally,” said Harsh Vardhan.
He was addressing a gathering of scientists and researchers at a conclave organised as part of the World Ayurveda Congress (WAC) by the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB), a premier institute under the Department of Biotechnology.
He said that it was unfortunate that much of the vast amount of knowledge available in Ayurveda 5,000 years ago has been lost in the past 500 years.
“Though we may not be able to restore Ayurveda to its original glory, but we can certainly revive it to meet the needs of our age,” the minister said.
“Youngsters must work with passion, not as a routine. They must look at how socially relevant the fruits of their research can be,” he added.
Jagdish Prasad, Director General of Health Services, said that there was need for a central law to integrate Ayurveda with modern medicine systems.
“Ayurveda needs to be vigorously positioned in public healthcare through strong policy interventions. A comprehensive law that integrates all systems of medicine could be the answer,” Prasad said.
“In India, there are 7000 registered Ayush practitioners, 60,000-bed capacity in the sector and 275 colleges. All this makes a plausible and strong case for mainstreaming the Ayush system to address the challenges of primary healthcare,” he said.