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Ayu. 2012 Jan-Mar; 33(1): 5–6.
PMCID: PMC3456863

Academic and professional interests of Ayurvedic human resource needs protection

Projecting the burning issues helpful in promoting Ayurveda locally and globally through the editorial has received tremendous response from the readers. AYU is increasingly becoming a popular medium to speak for Ayurveda. There are certain issues which need attention and care in order to secure the academic and professional interests of Ayurvedic human resource. By utilizing the youth and energy in a positive way, the aura of negative criticism for Ayurveda may be broken.

Youth Directed and Motivated to Research

Younger generation of Ayurveda is well acquainted with the recent advances in the field of science and technology. They want to understand Ayurveda by integration of tradition with technology. Fresh postgraduates seem to be eager to join Ph.D. after qualifying the eligibility test which is now mandatory before registration. In every university, the scholar has to make his/her presence compulsory for a minimum period of 2 years. These scholars feel highly disappointed when this 2-year research period is not considered as teaching experience by Ayurvedic institutions when they apply for the job.

If a teacher, who after passing M.D./M.S. (Ayu) is engaged in teaching profession, subsequently gets himself/herself registered for Ph.D. while in service, he/she is entitled for his/her continuous teaching experience as well as obtaining Ph.D. degree as and when he/she completes the research task. On the other hand, a fresh Ph.D. scholar, who after passing M.D./M.S. (Ayu) is directly registered for Ph.D., in addition to his/her research work he/she is assigned the responsibility of teaching of undergraduate and postgraduate students. The certificate of teaching is given by the parent institute but it is not considered by the other institutions whenever they apply for the job, saying that Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) does not recognize this 2 year Ph.D. period as teaching experience. Academicians or administrators may say that Ph.D. is exclusively a research degree, where after the minimum required 2 years period and completion of research task as had been laid down in the Ph.D. Regulations or Ordinance, the scholar completes his/her doctoral research which technically has nothing to do with the teaching assignment, though the institute where he is working assigned him additional teaching burden due to shortage of staff or to get the scholar oriented in the teaching profession.

Here, CCIM can take lead from the University Grants Commission (UGC) which has given due importance to research by giving Ph.D. incentives. As and when a candidate with a Ph.D. degree joins as a Lecturer in the university or colleges (affiliated to university), he/she is entitled for five advance increments. Similarly, as and when in service career a teacher obtains a Ph.D. degree, he/she is entitled for three Ph.D. increments. Even a teacher who has done Ph.D. but has not been benefited with the Ph.D. incentives in his/her service career is entitled for two Ph.D. increments subject to the condition that Ph.D. was not an essential qualification for the post.

Presently, UGC scales are applicable for the teachers in Faculty of Ayurveda at Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, and Institute for Post Graduate Teaching and Research in Ayurveda, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar. Teachers working in these institutes are getting benefit of such incentives. UGC scales are also implemented at Tibia College, Delhi. Since UGC scales are not universally applied to the Ayurvedic faculty members in various states, the benefit of Ph.D. incentives as per UGC guidelines is not given to Ayurvedic Ph.D. holders engaged in teaching profession. The CCIM with the support from Department of AYUSH, Government of India, may look into this matter which will certainly promote research in this ancient system of medicine.

Synthesis of Conventional Medicine Wherever Necessary

Now-a-days, Ayurvedic organizations are busy in communicating emails about the ruling of Hon’ble High Court of Judicature at Allahabad passing the order in which it directs that “where it is found that the persons having no qualifications at all, or that the persons having qualifications in different fields, such as Homeopathy, Unani, Ayurveda, Siddha, Tibbi, etc. are practicing modern medicines by prescribing drugs and carrying out surgeries/operations, the Chief Medical Officers and District Magistrates will immediately initiate prosecution against such persons by lodging an FIR. They will also seal such clinics/nursing homes. The District Magistrates and the Chief Medical Officers, are also directed to carry out inspection of diagnostic centers, running in their districts for compliance of the provisions of PC and PNDT Act. Let the Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary (Medical Health Department) will submit a compliance report by 13/07/2012.” (High Court of Judicature at Allahabad, Court no. 37, Contempt application (CIVIL) No. – 820 of 2002; accessed from http://elegalix.allahabadhighcourt.in/elegalix/Webshowjudgment.do on 05th July, 2012)

It is very interesting to note that in some states, practice of allopathic medicines by Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani (ASU) doctors is permitted, whereas in some states it is not permitted. Earlier, the BAMS degree of University of Lucknow and Kanpur University (in the beginning) was expanded as Bachelor of Ayurveda with modern medicine and surgery. Ayurvedic subjects as well as modern medical subjects were clearly mentioned in the degree itself as the course itself was integrated to cater to the needs of the society. The syllabus and curriculum prescribed by CCIM also covers the basic knowledge of modern medical science to be imparted to BAMS graduates. The CCIM regulates necessary infrastructure and facilities required in ASU systems with the course curriculum to impart graduate and postgraduate education for the award of BAMS/BUMS/BSMS degree at a graduate level, and Doctor of Medicine (Ayurveda) and Master of Surgery (Ayurveda) in the respective specialties at a postgraduate level.

Sushruta is recognized as father of ancient surgery. Moreover, Indian technique of rhinoplasty advocated by Sushruta has global acceptance. The medicated thread treatment (Ksharasutra surgical procedure) for piles and fistula in ano has been largely adopted by medical schools. The elaborate description of surgical instruments in Sushruta Samhita establishes that Shalya Chikitsa (surgery) has strong foundation in ancient medical treatises. In such circumstances, how it could be justified to stop a degree holder of Master of Surgery (Ayurveda) in carrying out surgery or performing operations? Is it not the responsibility of Ayurvedic fraternity to protect the genuine academic and professional interests of its own graduates and postgraduates? The colleges are granting admission to graduate and postgraduate courses only after getting clearance from the CCIM followed by the Department of AYUSH. If colleges do not have proper teaching staff, infrastructure, and hospital bed occupancy, then the permission for admission is not granted. Once CCIM, on recommendation of its “Inspectors,” is fully satisfied, the permission for admission is extended by Department of AYUSH. Thus, it is assumed that the degree holders of Master of Surgery (Ayurveda) in the specialties of Shalya, Shalakya, and Stree Roga Prasuti Tantra are well trained and competent enough to teach and practice the surgery and perform operations in the field to serve the ailing society.

It is the overall responsibility of the Govt. and Non-Govt. Organizations related to AYUSH to take care of the system and preserve the dignity of profession. If our postgraduates with the title Master of Surgery (Ayu.) are prohibited to perform surgery, then we have no right to play with their career and Ayurvedic fraternity should think seriously about continuity of such degree courses. Can other systems dictate us their terms and conditions? Our own people should equally have faith in their system of medicine and unnecessary use of modern synthetic drugs should not be encouraged as they are neither eco-friendly nor much suitable to our biological system, resulting in iatrogenic disease conditions. Here, Government of India may take initiatives to formulate policy to enlist the conditions where practitioners of other systems may also have access to modern medicine, viz. lifesaving conditions/medical emergencies and acute infective conditions, or where Symbio-health /integrative medicine is in the interest of the patients with conditions like diabetes mellitus, tuberculosis, hypertension, cancer, etc. since as per need both are complementary and supplementary to each other.

New academic session is approaching and graduates are preparing for entrance test for the admission in postgraduate courses. On initiation of Department of AYUSH, the experiment of entrance test jointly organized by National Institute of Ayurveda (NIA), Jaipur, and Institute for Post Graduate Teaching and Research in Ayurveda (IPGT and RA), Jamnagar, was running successfully. This time, it was the turn of Jaipur to organize the joint entrance test, but somehow the things could not get materialized. Dr. S. Radhakrishnan Rajasthan Ayurved University, Jodhpur, is organizing entrance test for Jaipur and Udaipur institutions only, whereas Gujarat Ayurved University is organizing the test for Jamnagar and Ahmedabad institutions. People at large were impressed with the successful organization of entrance test by Jaipur-Jamnagar combination and had expectations that in coming days more institutes will come together to have joint/combined entrance test so that students do not have to waste their time, energy, money etc. by running around to various places. The Department of AYUSH, Government of India, may act as a bridge to bring together various universities and institutions and encourage them for joint or combined entrance test for M.D./M.S. (Ayu) courses in forthcoming years, which will be in the best academic interest of the students.

These issues need deep discussion with an elaborative action plan for the development of Ayurveda at academic as well as social plane. The present long-awaited issue of AYU starts with the message from Hon’ble Vice Chancellor Prof. M. L. Sharma on the topic “Need for cultivation to enrich Ayurvedic Materia Medica”. The Director, IPGT and RA, and Chief Editor-AYU, Prof. M. S. Baghel, put forth his views in his communication on “Ethical prescription writing in Ayurveda”.

The issue is decorated with a mind-blowing guest editorial by Dr. R. H. Singh, Distinguished Professor on the analysis of a report on the status of Indian Medicine, recently submitted by Madam Shailaja Chandra. The issue is further enriched by Dr. Chandrakant Katiyar's innovative article on integrated approach for drug discovery from plant sources. Moreover, it comprises two review articles including one on the important topic of intellectual property rights by Dr. Anand Chaudhary. In addition, there are totally 13 clinical research articles with one survey study on popularity and health awareness about alternative medicine. The other clinical researches cover important areas like Rasayana as an adjuvant to anti-Koch's treatment, Prameha, Amavata, Pandu, Vicharchika, etc. In drug research, there are three researches based on pharmacological studies and two on pharmaceutical standardization. The issue ends with a short communication on radiological studies of mineral preparation Lauha Bhasma, followed by Letter to Editor with reply by the author, and a Hindi review article by R. K. Jakhmola. The issue covers researches from all sides of India. We expect a warm response from the readers and critics to this bound anthology of innovations and researches in Ayurveda.


Articles from Ayu are provided here courtesy of Medknow Publications