MNLU Nagpur Organises Expert Lecture On ‘From Tribal Knowledge To Ayurvedic Medicine : Transition Of Arogyapacha And Some Of The Legal Conundrums’


9 Feb 2023 3:42 AM GMT

  • MNLU Nagpur Organises Expert Lecture On ‘From Tribal Knowledge To Ayurvedic Medicine : Transition Of Arogyapacha And Some Of The Legal Conundrums’

    The CIPR and DPIIT-IPR Chair in collaboration with Centre for Tribal and Land Rights at MNLU, Nagpur conducted the expert lecture on the topic ‘From Tribal Knowledge to Ayurvedic Medicine : Transition of Arogyapacha ('The Wonder Herb of Kerala') and Some of the Legal Conundrums’ under the leadership of Prof. (Dr.) Vijender Kumar, and the Vice-Chancellor, MNLU, Nagpur.

    The objectives of the expert lecture was to explore the transition of Arogyapacha from being a rejuvenating substance in indigenous knowledge to a key therapeutic polyherbal commodity named Jeevani in Ayurvedic medicine through ‘retrobotanizing’.

    Dr. Girija K.P, Independent Researcher and Former Fellow, Indian Institute of Advanced Studies, Shimla who was the resource person for the program, elaborated on the historical background of Arogyapacha ('The Wonder Herb of Kerala'). She explained that 'Arogyappacha' (Trichopus zeylanicus) was found in the endemic to Agastyar hills of Kerala and it was used by the local 'kani' tribe as a health food for getting instant stamina, ever green health and vitality. The other benefits of Arogyapacha has a varied spectrum of pharmacological properties such as antioxidant, aphrodisiac, anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, anti-tumour, anti-ulcer, anti-hyperlipidemic, hepatoprotective and anti-diabetic. She further expounded upon the medicinal use of the wonder herb and stated, this ‘miracle plant’ is known for its traditional use by the Kani tribal community to combat fatigue.

    The complex negotiations among multiple players with conflicting interests that emerged illustrate the ways in which the plant got shifted from a rejuvenating substance in nature to a commercially valuable medicine. During the span of ten years from1987, the plant also came to be recognised as an endemic species tha tneeds protection from massive commercial exploitation.

    Moving ahead she stressed on the interpretations produced in every stage of the plant’s journey through different regimes, including the transnational regime of intellectual property rights, the National Biodiversity Laws, the regional Panchayati Raj System and the indigenous knowledge regime of Kani tribes were examined. She concluded by mentioning that, a plant referred to as Chathankilangu by the Kani tribes and locally known as Arogyapacha eventually came to be known as ‘the wonder herb of Kerala’ as well as ‘the Ginseng of Kerala’ in the course of this journey. This transition was not simple or linear; local, regional, national and international agencies and their networks contributed to this transformation.

    The expert lecture was attended by academicians, research and students of MNLU, Nagpur.

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