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Ayush practitioners hail Budget for providing stimulus for growth

Our Bureau, Chennai
Friday, February 3, 2023, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

The practitioners of Ayush system in the country observe that the Union Budget 2023-24 provides stimulus for growth and it comprises several positive schemes to promote the role of Ayurveda in the health systems of India.

However, progressive measures are needed to escalate the system into international level to increase the accessibility of the medicines and for marketing the products in foreign markets.
Hailing the Union finance minister for supporting the Ayush system, Prof. E. Kunhiraman, director of the MVR Ayurveda Medical College at Kannur in Kerala commented that the increase in the allocation for Ayush from last year’s allotment is a boom to the Ayush sector. But the Central government has to work out policy matters with regard to international trade of Ayush products because blockade exists for selling Indian made traditional medicines to foreign markets. This affects the growth of the Ayush industry on an international level. He wanted the Union government to address the existing challenges faced by the Ayush industry in doing overseas business as is done by the modern pharma industry.
Dr R Kannan, president of the Indian Medical Practitioners Cooperative Pharmacy and Stores (IMPCOPS) Ltd in Chennai, said the Union budget gives major emphasis on increasing Ayush services and scientific research. The total allocation for the Ayush ministry has increased by 20 per cent to Rs. 3,647 crore, which is higher than the previous year's. The budget has also emphasized on promoting evidence-based research in Ayush systems through Ayush research councils. Similarly, the integration of the Ayush system in the national health ecosystem has got a major boost in the budget 2023-24.
Dr Vemula Bhanu Prakash, president of the Ayurveda Medical Practitioners’ Association in Andhra Pradesh has said the Central government should monitor whether the budget allocation for Ayush is fully utilized by the state governments. He said, private partnership is necessary for the development of Ayurveda and it should be given priority in the National Ayush Mission.

According to Ayurveda Medicine Manufacturers Organisation of India (AMMOI), the tourism promotion scheme envisaged in the budget will indirectly boost up the Ayurveda sector in Kerala with myriad opportunities for foreign tourists to avail the system of treatment.  The budget envisages tourism promotion in a public-private partnership model. This can be achieved with the participation of Ayurveda wellness centres and treatment centres operating in various parts of the country.
Dr Ramanathan, general secretary of the association, said the scheme for the digital public infrastructure for agriculture is boon for the Ayurveda sector by way of increasing the cultivation of medicinal plants. The Ayurveda sector can benefit from this platform for procuring raw materials directly from cultivators without the interference of external forces. Among the Ayurveda graduates, a new scheme for entrepreneurship is launched through the introduction of ‘Agriculture Accelerator Fund’. The graduates can focus on medicinal plants and herbal cultivation in the form of ‘agri-startups’ as envisaged in the budget.
In the scheme to make India a global hub for millet cultivation, the Ayush sector can also contribute a lot. AMMOI says that millets are ‘ayurvedic aahar’ hence it should be promoted by the ministry of Ayush and encourage the farmers to increase its production. The state medicinal plant boards in each state can take up this scheme for economic growth and the board should spread awareness about its role in health areas.  
Dr. Rajendra Prasad, former production manager at the Sri Sreenivasa Ayurveda Pharmacy at Thirupati Devasthanam in Andhra Pradesh has expressed the hope that the 20 percent increase in the allocation for Ayush will definitely boost the Ayurveda sector.


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