Government approves National Mission on Medicinal Plants

July 24th, 2008 - 9:12 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, July 24 (IANS) The government Thursday sanctioned Rs.6.3 billion for creating a National Mission on Medicinal Plants. “The scheme will be implemented by the National Medicinal Plants Board through the Department of AYUSH,” a statement issued after a meeting here of the cabinet committee on economic affairs, presided over by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, said.

“The Mission proposes to bring 80,000-100,000 hectares of land under medicinal plants by 2011-12. This will be done through direct financial assistance for cultivation.

“An almost equal area will be covered by providing incentives to farmers to switch over from traditional crops to medicinal plants,” the statement explained.

About 200 nurseries will be established, both in the public and private sectors, for making available planting material of certified quality, it added.

“The interventions are expected to generate approximately 6 crore (60 million) man-days of employment by 2011-12,” statement said.

The Mission would help in developing the medicinal plants sector through production of raw material of quality and standardized constituents for use by the AYUSH/herbal industry, the statement said.

It would also push exports “and thereby enhance the quality and acceptability of AYUSH systems of medicine and promote export of value added items for an increased share in the world market.

AYUSH is the acronym for the Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy systems of Indian medicine.

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