Advisor, Ladakh chairs first meeting of State Medicinal Plant Board (SMPB), Ladakh
Leh, June 3: Advisor, Umang Narula (Chairman SMPB) chaired the first meeting of the State Medicinal Plant Board (SMPB), UT Ladakh. The prime objective of SMPB is to act as the nodal agency for coordination and implementation of National Medicinal Plants Board programmes (NMPB) in the UT. Member Secretary, SMPB, Dr. Motup Dorje briefed the Board about the agenda items for the 1st SMPB meeting and actions taken so far as per GoI guidelines to make SMPB functional in Ladakh.
While discussing the agenda items, the Advisor stated that Ladakh is a repository of high-value medicinal plants which are used extensively in the traditional Sowa-Rigpa system of medicine. He asked the Board to conduct a holistic survey to identify endangered plant species, causes of threats and possible remedies and identify areas to be conserved as per the guidelines on conservation, development and sustainable management of medicinal plants by NMPB. He asked the members to prepare a management plan by involving local stakeholders and experts from outside.
Some of the main agenda points discussed were the identification of Medicinal Plant Conservation and Development Areas (MPCDAs); in-situ & ex-situ conservation and augmenting local medicinal plants and aromatic species of medical significance and the proposal for the establishment of herbal gardens in schools/ colleges/ institutions to create awareness about traditional usage of medicinal plants. Further, Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities for dissemination of traditional knowledge; holding training and capacity building workshops and inviting institutions for research and development of the medicinal plant sector were also discussed by the Board.
The primary mandate of NMPB is to develop an appropriate mechanism for coordination between various ministries/ departments/ organization and implementation of support policies/programs for overall (conservation, cultivation, trade and export) growth of medicinal plants sector both at the Central /State and International level.
The meeting was attended by members SMPB: Administrative Secretary to Government, Health & Medical Education (Vice-Chairman); Administrative Secretary Forest; Administrative Secretary Agriculture; Administrative Secretary Horticulture Member; Associate Director, SKUAST; Chief Conservator of Forest; Director Industries and Commerce; Director Horticulture; Director Floriculture; Director Agriculture; Director, Defence Institute of High-Altitude Research (DIHAR), DRDO, Ladakh; Director, National Institute of Sowa-Rigpa; Director IIIM, Jammu; Director AYUSH; Chief Executive Officer/Member secretary and Controlling Authority Drugs and Food Controller Organization