January 05, 2006

Harming Indian Traditions

The action by Comrade Brinda Karat in talking nonsense about the medicines made by Baba Ramdev's pharmacy could be excused. This is because her remarks were made out of ignorance about Ayurved and to further her own agenda of securing 'justice' for some persons who were at one time engaged by the Divya Yoga Pharmacy.

Indeed, one will find any number of such so-called Indian intellectuals whose knowledge about India and Indian traditions is next to zero and they could not care less in any case about them.

However, it is quite another matter when the Health Minister of the country is gullible enough to be taken in by her representations and act at her bidding.

It was really shocking to find the Health Minister himself choosing to make a statement that samples of medicines 'said to be' from Baba Ramdev's pharmacy contained animal matter. This was a most damaging and irresponsible statement by the Health Minister who, in the same statement also said that it was yet to be confirmed if the medicines were indeed produced by Baba Ramdev's pharmacy. Although the second part of the statement was correct, by making the ambivalent first statement, he at once destroyed the faith of a lot of people. There was no need for the Central Government to say anything when they had already referred the matter to the State Government.

More of his immature approach was also to reveal itself when he said that since the samples were received from an MP, his Ministry was 'duty bound' to test the same. WHAT DUTY, Mr. Minister? The administration of drug laws and licencing issues including testing is the responsibility of the States and one wonders why the Union MInistry had to take it upon itself to test the samples instead of requesting Com. Karat to follow the procedure and approach the State Goverment.

By this one act, the Minister, who is supposed to have more knowledge than Com. Karat, has possibly brought the entire UPA government another embarrassment by stepping out of line.

In fact, people are wondering whether the Ministry has allowed itself to be used, knowingly or otherwise, in this whole affair to bring Indian Traditional Medicines into disrepute.

It was heartening to hear other sensible people in the UPA like Ambika Soni and Lalu Yadav taking a mature approach.

It is a living shame that in India, we are still left with vestiges of the slave mentality in every sphere. And, these are the people who would not let India come into its own.