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Geographical indication tag for ‘Mannapparai Murukku' sought

Staff Reporter

Along with Thanjavur Venna and Madurai ‘Malli'

— Photo: R. Ashok

back to tradition:S. Vincent, Member Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Council for Science and Technology, speaking at the inauguration of a programme on ‘Traditional Science and Technology Development' at National College in Tiruchi on Sunday.

TIRUCHI: The Tamil Nadu State Council for Science and Technology has applied for Geographical Indication tag for ‘Manapparai Murukku' along with Thanjavur Veena and Madurai ‘Malli'.

The State Government was keen on obtaining patents for these products so as to safeguard the waning tradition, trade and livelihood of people in these geographical locations with suitable support systems, S. Vincent, Member Secretary of the Council, said on Sunday, after inaugurating a programme on ‘Traditional Science and Technology Development' organised by the National College with the Council's sponsorship.

With Tamil Nadu's unique strength of natural resources, the scheme to promote traditional science and technology through training women self-help groups has been taken up in 10 districts to improve their standard of living.

The State Skill Development Mission was into the task of facilitating women SHGs to launch small scale industries after the training. By obtaining the patents for traditional products and securing scientific validation, the Government would be able to bring the trainees under the ambit of its welfare schemes and secure bank loans, Dr. Vincent said.

The vast database being generated by the Central Government's Traditional Knowledge Digital Library would help substantially in improving the health sector. India has documented medicinal properties of 6,000 herbs and there were 7,000 registered practitioners of traditional medicine.

It was to rectify the only shortcoming of scientific validation that patent cells for ensuring intellectual property rights have been created in five universities, Dr. Vincent said, exhorting colleges to coordinate with the patent cells and appealing to the stake holders of traditional knowledge to help in dissemination of their methodologies for wider reach of benefits.

P. Brindha, Associate Dean and Co-ordinator, CARISM (Centre for Advanced Research in Indian System of Medicine, explained how developed nations were capitalising on Indian traditional products by processing and offering them back to Indians as dietary supplements.

The CARISM would help the trainees undergoing the training in preparation of Ayurvedic medicines to start their own units through scientific validation of their proposals, Prof. Brindha said.

Principal K. Anbarasu felt the reluctance on the part of practitioners of traditional medicine to divulge information was causing extinction of the traditional systems, and a loss to the economy.

T.R. Sasi Varier, Executive Director, K.S. Varier's Asthanga Ayurvedics (P) Ltd., observed that the era of sharing information for wider dissemination has already begun.

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