COVID-19 evoked worldwide interest in yoga, ayurveda, naturopathy: Union Minister Jitendra Singh

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New Delhi, Oct 30 (PTI) Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Friday said the coronavirus pandemic has evoked a worldwide interest in yoga, ayurveda and naturopathy to build immunity and lead a healthy lifestyle.

Delivering the inaugural address at the 'Global Ayush Mela' organised virtually by Assocham, he said in the last four to five months, the western world has turned to India to explore the best practices of alternative medicine.

Singh, the Minister of State for Personnel, said the new India will become 'Aatmanirbhar' (self-reliant) in healthcare and will contribute to the world in providing immunity booster mechanisms through the traditional medicine system.

'COVID-19 has reiterated and reemphasised the virtues of integrated healthcare and there is a need to make it a part of world medical regimes including that of WHO,' the minister was quoted as saying in an official statement.

Singh said ever since Narendra Modi took over as prime minister, he has brought to the centrestage the virtues of indigenous system of medical management.

He said it was Modi who brought a unanimous resolution in the United Nations to observe International Day of Yoga, as a result of which yoga has reached virtually every household across the world, according to the statement issued by the Personnel Ministry.

Also, a separate Ministry of AYUSH was created considering the importance of indigenous medical management system.

The Union Minister said that the himalayan and northeastern states have a very rich repository of medicinal herbs and plants, and urged all stakeholders to make use of them and promote the same at global level.

Secretary in the Ministry of AYUSH Rajesh Kotecha said the government was actively considering growing medicinal plants in 10 lakh hectares at a cost of Rs 4,000 crore under mission Aatmanirbhar Bharat.

In his address, Acharya Balkrishna said Patanjali was working vigorously for promotion of ayurveda at global level and pledged all support to all stakeholders, according to the statement.

On the occasion, Jitendra Singh also released Assocham-NABARD Knowledge Report on medicinal plants. A new manufacturing unit of Kudrati Ayurveda of Yousuf Shaikh in Gujarat was also e-inaugurated.

Singh congratulated Niranjan Hiranandani, President of apex industry body Assocham (the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India) and Deepak Sood, Secretary General, Assocham for organising the Global Ayush Mela. PTI AKV NSD