An organisation representing Ayurvedic medicine manufacturers has sought to develop the proposed Government Ayurveda Medical College in Idukki as a National Institute of Ayurveda.
Leaders of Ayurvedic Medicine Manufacturers Organisation of India (AMMOI) said on December 7 that this would help boost the eco-tourism potential of the district, apart from facilitating research in Ayurveda.
P. Ramkumar and D. Ramanathan, AMMOI president and general secretary respectively, suggested that a proposal for setting up the national institute in Idukki be included in the upcoming Union Budget. This would also help generate funds for the development of Ayurveda through Central grants.
They pointed out that Kerala now had only three Ayurveda medical colleges in the public sector, in Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, and Kannur. The world is looking up to Kerala for the authentic Ayurvedic experience. Setting up a national institute in the State would go a long way in not only promoting the tourism potential of the area but also bringing in foreign exchange, they said.
Dr. Ramanathan said that there had been a proposal earlier to convert either the Ayurveda college in Thiruvananthapuram or in Kannur into a national institute. However, a section of the staff, including teachers, reportedly raised objections, and it was subsequently dropped. AMMOI had recently submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister during the Navakerala Sadas public outreach programme highlighting the demand to develop the proposed college in Idukki as a national institute, he said.
Meanwhile, in response to a question in the Rajya Sabha by V. Sivadasan of the CPI(M) on the steps being taken by the Union government to promote Ayurveda in Kerala, Union Minister for AYUSH Sarbananda Sonowal said the Centre was willing to consider proposals if they were submitted under the State annual action plan. Mr. Sivadasan had pointed out that though Kerala had many well-known institutions for Ayurveda, there was no national-level one to promote study and research into the traditional system of medicine.