Thiruvananthapuram: Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi today said the Central government sought to promote India’s centuries-old medicinal practices which had become a “popular, credible and effective health hamper” for the world.
The traditional systems, which were thousands of years old, were a heritage inherited from ascetics, saints and sufis, the minister said, adding that India had now become the ayurveda and yoga hub of the world.
Along with modern health care, ancient medicinal systems such as ayurveda, unani, homeopathy and naturopathy were the priority of the Narendra Modi government, he said while inaugurating an annual festival at the Santhigiri Ashram near here. The government was committed to providing the people with the best health care services which were also affordable and accessible, he said at the “Poojithapeedam Samarpanam” celebration and Kumbh Mela at the ashram.
While the government had been upgrading health services to an international level, it also encouraged and promoted the centuries-old traditional medicinal practices, a press release from the ashram quoted the minister as saying.
He pointed out that to promote and make people aware of the ancient medicinal systems, the Modi government had in 2014 formed a separate AYUSH Ministry for focused attention on the development of education and research in ayurveda, yoga, naturopathy, unani, siddha and homoeopathy.
The strategy of adopting the latest medical systems and promoting traditional practices will help improve health services in the country, Naqvi said. The “Ayushman Bharat Yojana” programme, billed as the world’s largest government-funded health insurance scheme announced in the Union budget earlier this month, would cover over 10 crore poor families or about 40-50 crore beneficiaries, he said.
The minister also stressed that communal harmony, tolerance and brotherhood were in “India’s DNA”.
“We should all strengthen peace, prosperity, unity and communal harmony through spiritual culture to defeat those elements who want to disturb the fabric of harmony and brotherhood,” he said. Founded by Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru about five decades ago, the Santhigiri Ashram is a major spiritual centre today.
Among its many activities is the rejuvenation of Indian systems of medicine.