National Institute for Sowa-Rigpa

  • Category
    Polity & Governance
  • Published
    26th Nov, 2019

Context

It has been decided by the Government of India to promote Sowa-Rigpa system of medicine by establishing a National Institute of Sowa-Rigpa (NISR) at Leh, Union Territory of Ladakh at an estimated cost of Rs.47.25 crore.

About

  • Sowa-Rigpa is a Traditional Medical system of the Himalayan belt in India. It has been popularly practiced in Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Darjeeling (West Bengal), Himachal Pradesh, Union Territory of Ladakh and now all over India.
  • The Institute will be an autonomous National Institute under Ministry of AYUSH with the mandate to undertake interdisciplinary education and research programmes in Sowa-Rigpa in collaboration with premier national and international Institutes and facilitate integration of different systems of medicine.
  • This will facilitate quality education, scientific validation, quality control & standardization and safety evaluation of Sowa-Rigpa products, standardized Sowa-Rigpa based tertiary health delivery and to promote interdisciplinary research & education of Sowa-Rigpa at undergraduate, postgraduate and postdoctoral levels.
  • The National Institute of Sowa Rigpa would identify the best Sowa-Rigpa treatment – including their standard procedures-within the framework of traditional Sowa-Rigpa principle and possible co-relation with bio-molecular western medicine in providing health care facilities to the general public.

All about SOWA-RIGPA

  • “Sowa-Rigpa” commonly known as Amchi system of medicine is one of the oldest, Living and well documented medical tradition of the world
  • Some scholars believe that it is originated from India; some says China and others consider it to be originated from Tibet itself.
  • The majority of theory and practice of Sowa-Rigpa is similar to “Ayurveda”.
  • The first Ayurvedic influence came to Tibet during 3rd century AD but it became popular only after 7th centuries with the approach of Buddhism to Tibet.
  • There after this trend of exportation of Indian medical literature, along with Buddhism and other Indian art and sciences were continued till early 19th century.

The basic theory of Sowa-Rigpa may be adumbrated in terms of the following five points:

  1. The body in disease as the locus of treatment;
  2. Antidote, i.e., the treatment;
  3. The method of treatment through antidote;
  4. Medicine that cures the disease;
  5. Materia Medica, Pharmacy & Pharmacology

Infrastructures of SOWA-RIGPA in India

  • In most of Himalayan regions Sowa-Rigpa is practiced in traditional way with community support with an Amchi in every village. But since the last two decades this scenario has been changing, adopting some of the administrative elements of modern hospital system in educational Institutions, dispensaries, hospitals and pharmacies etc.
  • Nevertheless, still there are all together around 1000 practitioners of Sowa-Rigpa in India catering health care in harsh Himalayan regions and other places.
  • Dharamshala in Himanchal Pardesh and Ladakh region of J&K are the main Centers for Sowa-Rigpa Institutions in India.
  • There is Central Council for Tibetan Medicine in Dharamsala to regulate the practice of Sowa-Rigpa in India; it looks after the registration of practitioners, standard of colleges and other mechanism to regulate Sowa-Rigpa.
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