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SC Dismisses PIL Seeking Direction To Allow Homeopathic Treatment for Mild Cases of COVID-19; Allows Petitioner to Approach HC

Radhika Roy
21 Aug 2020 4:19 AM GMT
SC Dismisses PIL Seeking Direction To Allow Homeopathic Treatment for Mild Cases of COVID-19; Allows Petitioner to Approach HC
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The Supreme Court has dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by two homeopathic physicians, seeking directions to the Central Government to permit homeopathic treatment of mild cases of COVID-19. 

A Bench comprising of Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, and Justices AS Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian dismissed the plea, but allowed the Petitioners the liberty to approach the Delhi High Court.

The Petitioners, Dr. Ravi M. Nair and Dr. Asok Kumar Das, had sought for the Ministry of AYUSH to be directed to approve treatment of mild cases by homoeopathic medicines stand alone, and of severe to critical cases by adopting integrated approach of giving allopathic medicines with add-on therapy.

It was claimed that, based on their "observational research", there were certain homeopathic medicines that could help in preventing and combating the virus and, that even though they have been successful in coming up with such a solution, the State Boards and authorities were holding up approvals for the clinical trials.

"This act of arbitrarily holding up approval and stagnating the process at such a crucial time when millions of lives could be saved owing to these medications, violates the right guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution," submitted the plea.

The Petitioners, through Advocate Suvidutt MS, claimed that the homoeopathic system of medicine had "ample scope" to treat COVID-19 successfully, as it was not based on the causative pathogenic microbes. Further, homoeopathic treatment could have the following advantages:

  • Early recovery so that the chances of spread of transmission of the virus during the active stage can be decreased;
  • Arrests the further progress of the disease and thus prevents further complications, so that need of institutional management having sophisticated instruments like ventilation etc. may be lessened. Thus, the burden on the big hospitals will be less.

It was further submitted that whereas confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 could be done only by employing the costly RT-PCR test of nasopharyngeal swab, under homoeopathic treatment there was lesser need for costly laboratory investigations.

Other claims made by the Petitioners included:

  • The number of allopathic hospital was limited whereas there were about 2 lacs homoeopathic physicians in India and were available everywhere, even at the remotest villages;
  • The efficacy of homoeopathy in the management of past epidemic diseases was well proved as recorded in the history;
  • Homoeopathic treatment was safe, effective, economic and, hence affordable to all.

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