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    TN Government should club Siddha with the modern healthcare institutions - Says Expert

    Putting a new idea before the government of Tamil Nadu for the promotion of traditional Siddha healing system at national level, an ethnopharmacologist-cum-researcher from the Meleka Manipal Medical College in Karnataka has said that government should club Siddha hospitals/research centres with all the modern healthcare institutions to support integrative medical care.

    Since Siddha system of treatment is part of the healthcare tradition of Tamil Nadu, it is the responsibility of the state government to protect it and popularise it at the national level. The ethnopharmacologist is now engaged in potential researches in the system to heal various ailments. He says that a modern medical doctor or a student hailing from Tamil Nadu should understand the basics of Siddha as it is their heritage.

    In the preliminary level, the government, with the help of central Ayush department, should start a Siddha diabetic OPD in the Madras Medical College (MMC)  and a Siddha cancer OP/IP ward in all the modern cancer institutions. He claims that there are successful and efficacy proven medicines  in the Siddha system to cure cancer disease.

    Further, the state government should encourage researches in Siddha, for which it should collaborate with  major research institutions all over the country. Sufficient financial assistance should be granted for research work, opined Dr Arul Amuthan, the ethnopharmacologist.

    He alleges that the central department of Ayush is not giving adequate support for the promotion of Siddha. It is giving priority to Ayurveda. Pressures from associations of Siddha practitioners, both from government and private sectors, manufacturers,  traders and NGOs are weak and not putting pressure on the concerned authorities. It shows that the stakeholders themselves are not interested to take pain for the promotion of the system, alleged Dr Amuthan.

    “We cannot claim that the central Ayush department is promoting Siddha system in the country. It gives priority to Ayurveda and sidelining Siddha. Everybody knows that if Siddha is promoted, it will supersede all other systems because it has the proven record of successful drugs for any chronic disease (eg: varma, metal drugs, animal based drugs, kaaya kalpam drugs, peru marunthugal etc). So, on behalf of the Siddha community in Tamil Nadu and of our heritage, I want to put the suggestion before the state government that it should list Siddha in the task force or in the priority list”, he told Pharmabiz.

    He further said there is a burning issue prevailing in the academic field of Siddha, that is, less job opportunity for Siddha graduates. The only source is the government sector of Tamil Nadu.

    According to him, measures are required to curb fake researches by non-Siddha people in order to obtain financial assistance from governmental agencies. Several people from other areas engage in research in herbal medicines and claim that it is Siddha.

    Dr. Arul Amuthan is conducting researches in the system using ‘serabkottai nei’  for neuropathy pain and endometriosis,  in laboratory animals. This drug reduces pain in neuropathy, which is comparable with the gabapentin (an allopathy drug to control neuropathy pain). It was found that the drug reduced the size of the endometriosis cyst very significantly, he said.

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