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Naturopathy as a future-oriented health-care system

The growing perception of Naturopathy as a future-oriented system of healthcare and the evergreen relevance of Gandhian thoughts on health were the two themes that dominated the activities of observation of Naturopathy Day, 2020. The virtual programme was graced by Shripad Yesso Naik, Union AYUSH Minister, Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary (AYUSH), Dr. BhushanPatwardhan, Vice Chairman of UGC and other noted figures.

Naturopathy Day is observed every year in the country on 18th November, the day on which Mahatma Gandhi become a Life Member of the Nature Cure Foundation Trust and signed the deed.  Gandhiji is considered the founding figure of Naturopathy in India, as it was largely through his efforts that this practice which originated in Europe became popular in India.

The inauguration of the two-day observation of 3rd Naturopathy Day was done by the Central Council for Research in Yoga & Naturopathy (CCRYN), through a well-attended e-event. In his speech at the inauguration, Naik recalled the concepts of Mahatma Gandhi on health and its significance in the national mainstream.  He said that Bapu’s words were true even today especially in times of Covid-19 where personal hygiene, sanitation, diet, and lifestyle are of utmostimportance in its prevention.  The Minister observed that a large number of patients are drawn to Naturopathy centers and encouraged CCRYN to start collaborative research with these institutions.  He also noted CCRYN’s efforts to start Mind-Body Medicine centers in reputed institutes like AIIMS and PGIs across the country.  Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary (AYUSH), in his speech highlighted some of the ongoing and forthcoming efforts of the Ministry for promotion of Naturopathy, which included efforts to put in place a regulatory mechanism and to raise high-quality educational institutions.

National Institute of Naturopathy (NIN), Pune also organised a high-profile e-event. NIN encourage the concept of vitality in the context of the pandemic by organizing across the country a series of events spread over three days in association with Yoga and Naturopathy Medical Colleges, Premier Naturopathy Hospitals, and Clinics.  The themes selected for these events were Jan Andolan against Covid-19, AYUSH for Immunity and Nurturing vitality through Naturopathy.

The National Institute of Naturopathy organised a mega series of 48 webinars over 48 days starting from 2nd October, 2020 which culminated on Naturopathy Day.  The purpose of the webinars was to sensitize health care professionals about the comprehensiveness of Mahatma Gandhi’s insights on health and various aspects of Health determinants.  The webinars were organised in association with various Gandhian Institutes like Gandhi Research Foundation Centre for Gandhian Studies, Gandhi Bhavan, Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, etc.  Renowned speakers from all over the world delivered lectures in this mega-series.

Naturopathy and its focus on self-responsibility in the matter of health in finding new adherents globally.  The growing opportunities for Naturopathy to collaborate with other healthcare systems through several National and International Institutions were touched upon by different speakers on the occasion.

Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH extended his well wishes to all Naturopaths across the country on the occasion and emphasised the importance of the upcoming Nisarg Gram Project to carry out innovative work and to explore the possibility of integration of Naturopathy with other AYUSH systems.

Shripad Yesso Naik, Minister of AYUSH joined the e-event through a video message, and appreciated the efforts of NIN in the last year, including their Tribal project started at GoheBudruk, Pune.  He said that such initiatives are needed for tapping the potential of Naturopathy to facilitate better health and over-all development of the people in the remote areas of the country.

Dr.  Bhushan Patwardhan, Vice Chairman of UGC called upon Naturopaths of the country to create a Bharat model of Naturopathy with a gigantic vision.  A multidisciplinary approach would be very much in order.  The future will be the era of Physiology, not Pathology.  Health through Medicine is obscure and Health in the coming years will be more reliant on Naturopathy.  Without a core change in the mindset of people, the planet will be sicker and sicker day by day.  Therefore, the innovation of a new model of Naturopathy treatment is the demand of the day, along with its integration with other modern science.

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