‘Pandemic prompted world to rediscover ayurveda’: Vice-President Dhankar

Dhankar said India was a global leader in ayurveda, with a rich legacy of knowledge and practice that spans millennia. 
Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar inaugurating the fifth edition of Global Ayurveda Festival in Thiruvananthapuram. (Photo | Twitter)
Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar inaugurating the fifth edition of Global Ayurveda Festival in Thiruvananthapuram. (Photo | Twitter)

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Covid pandemic prompted the world to rediscover ayurveda and its larger philosophy of wellness and wellbeing as envisioned in ancient Indian texts, said Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar. He was speaking after inaugurating the fifth edition of Global Ayurveda Festival (GAF) here on Friday.

The VP said ayurveda was a beacon of hope amid complex health challenges. Different aspects of ayurveda like prevention, balance, and personalised care align well with the global call for a sustainable and equitable healthcare system. “Ayurveda is much beyond treating ailments. It encompasses a comprehensive approach to wellness and well-being. Apart from curing existing ailments, ayurveda protects the overall health of the body. No wonder that more than Rog, ayurveda talks about Nirog,” he said. 

Dhankar said India was a global leader in ayurveda, with a rich legacy of knowledge and practice that spans millennia. 

The Union government plays a pivotal role in fostering the growth and global recognition of ayurveda. The Ayush industry which was about `20,000 crore eight years ago has reached about `1.5 lakh crore today. There are about 40,000 Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the AYUSH sector.

Kerala’s ayurveda tourism not only promotes well-being but also contributes significantly to the state’s economic growth, he said. Union Minister V Muraleedharan, who is also chairman of GAF 2023, said that the steady increase in global demand for ayurvedic products and services amply demonstrated the strength and credibility of the time-tested Indian wellness system.

Transport Minister Antony Raju called for scaling up scientific research and documentation efforts to promote ayurveda and to make it globally acceptable. Dhankar presented the Brihatrayee Ratna award instituted by Arya Vaidya Pharmacy Coimbatore Ltd, to Vaidya Sadanand Prabhakar Sardeshmukh.

Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, secretary, Ministry of Ayush, Dr G G Gangadharan, working chairman of GAF, and Dr C Sureshkumar, secretary general of GAF, were present at the inaugural function.

MINISTERS SPAR OVER HEALTH GRANTS 

Union Minister V Muraleedharan and state Transport Minister Antony Raju sparred over Central health grants. Raju, in his welcome address, said Kerala was being deprived of its due share of Central funds.  “We need to understand the fact that an amount of D371.36 crore which has to be received from the Union government as health grants for the financial years 2021-22 and 2022-23 is yet to be allocated,” he said.

“It is also unfortunate that the Union government is trying to snatch the credit for Kerala’s developments in the health sector by rebranding the state’s Primary Health Centres (PHCs) as Ayushman Arogya Mandirs,” he added. Muraleedharan termed Raju’s allegation unfortunate.

“Antony said the Government of India is not supporting Kerala in health matters. The Union finance minister had clearly stated that every claim of the Government of Kerala was met by the Centre and the latter never tried to withhold a single paise due to the state. This was clarified in Parliament as well,” he said.

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