Indigenous Medicinal Knowledge Resources of Himachal Region: A Need for Scientific Processing and Networking Presented By: Prof. I. V. Malhan, Professor, Department of LIS, University of Jammu Ms. Samita Wadhera, Research Scholar, Department of LIS, University of Jammu.
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People around the globe have tested herbs and other plant sources for prevention and cure of diseases and well being of human beings. During difficult situations of famine and food scarcity, mankind made every possible effort for survival.
India is recognized as one of the world’s top “Twelve Mega diversity” nations. The country has some of the richest, oldest and diverse cultural traditions associated with various aspects and one of the aspects is the use of medicinal plants which is still amply practiced in several parts of India.
India has the indigenous plant based medicine system known as Ayurveda that works for complete cure of the body without leaving any side effects. The ancient Indian scriptures have a mention of several plants and their medicinal value.
Codyceps sinensis is a fungus that is popularly known as winter worm and summer grass because its morphology changes with change in seasons.In case its propagation is encouraged in high altitudes of Himachal, it can enormously improve the socio-economic conditions of cultivators as its exports are worth nuggets of gold.
Himachal Pradesh bordering the Tibetan region of China is known for some of the rare herbs.
Himachal is not only a place for less known miracle herbs but also known for some of the miracle healers practicing indigenous knowledge.
Jeet Ram of Kandhakhat died when he was 104 years old. “On an average, he examined more than 100 patients every day and stories abound on how he cured thousands of people of cancer, diabetes, hypertension, gynecological disorders, arthritis, gout, gangrene, mental disorders, skin disorders, barrenness, heart ailments, etc…. A team of five American doctors visited this miracle healer to find out as to how he cured patients of these deadly diseases without the intervention of modern medicines and surgical techniques” (Chib, 2002).
Janta Clinic in Gharoh, District Kangra
Clinic has been run by Dr. Lachhman Singh Thakur who has:
an indigenous method of diagnosis of disease with the help of a unique mirror.
diagnoses the body of the patient with the help of this specialized mirror
informs the patient about the problem and then prescription is given.
patients from distance places from all over Northern India visit the clinic because of his unique way of diagnosis of disease.
It takes around 20-30 minutes to diagnose a patient.
After diagnosis of the problem, initiates treatments of the diseases mainly through the prescription of herbal medicines
In a personal interview he refused on comment on the unique characteristics of the mirror and simply replied that it is his personal experience and he only can diagnose the problem areas of the body with the help of this mirror.
Some of the patients present in the clinic were also asked about the effectiveness and accuracy of this diagnosis technique. The patients replied that they are fully satisfied regarding the diagnosis of their medical problem.
Interviews were also conducted with some people associated with collection of medicinal plants and preparation of plant based medicines in the higher altitudes of the Himachal Pradesh.