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Herbal Wealth of Western Ghats - Agasthyamalai (A Pictorial Herbal Guide)

Herbal Wealth of Western Ghats - Agasthyamalai (A Pictorial Herbal Guide)
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Item Code: NAW910
Author: Ayush
Publisher: CENTRAL COUNCIL FOR RESEARCH IN AYURVEDIC SCIENCES
Language: English
Edition: 2016
ISBN: 9789383864218
Pages: 160 (Throughout Color Illustrations)
Cover: HARDCOVER
Other Details: 12.00 X 9.00 inch
weight of the book: 0.93 kg
Introduction
Traditional drugs of herbals have been in use since the dawn of civilization to maintain health and alleviate human suffering from disease. In recent times people from all walks of life are switching over to traditional medicines due to their no or less side effects, low cost etc. As per the WHO report an estimated 80% of world's population relies on herbal medicine. Many herbal medicines are directly used as therapeutic agents. However, there are several medicinal plants which also act as a starting material for the synthesis of drugs or as models for pharmacologically active compounds. India, being a vast country with 15 Agro climatic zones, is the second largest producer and exporter of herbal drugs as well as raw materials in the world.

An estimated 6000-7000 medicinal plants are being used in India as Folk medicine and documented systems of medicines like Ayurveda, Unani, Homeopathy, Siddha and Sowa-rigpa out of which Agasthyamalai hill region harbor about 800 species. Agasthyamalai is situated at the Southern end of Western Ghats. Vedic Sage "Agathiyar" known as father of Tamil literature who is one of the main contributors of Siddha system of medicine is believed to have resided at Agasthyamalai hill. The local tribe namely "Kani" has their settlements on these hills.

The present treatise on "Herbal Wealth of Western Ghats Agasthyamalai" offers itself as a pictorial and herbaria guide on 67 important medicinal plants, its adulterants and substitutes. First hand information on 70 Folk claims drawn out of the reported plants.

The book provides an overview of various facts of the Herbal Wealth of Agasthyamalai hill region. Further, the book is an assimilation of information containing numerous published as well as unpublished data, herbarium, crude drugs and field photos. The work carried out by Dr. G.V.R. Joseph, A.D.(Bot.) and his team under over all supervision of Dr. M.M. Pasha, Ex. D.D.G. and Prof. VD. K.S. Dhiman, D.G. CCRAS would be of immense use for researchers, academicians and all those who are working in herbal medicine sector.

Preface
India is one of the richest Biodiversity hotspot in the World and Agasthyamalai hills which are the southern end of Western Ghats is well known for its herbal wealth. The evergreen forest of Agasthyamalai is situated between 8.65000 N and 77.2167E ranging from 300m to 1868m. It is the abode of Vedic Sage "Agathiyar" who is the main contributor of Siddha system of medicine. The area is inhabitated by "Kapil" Tribes where approximately 800 medicinal plants are naturally growing some of them are endemic to this region like Baccarat courtallensis (Wight) Mull-Arg., Decalepis arayalpathra (J.Joseph & V.Chandras.) Venter, Phyllanthus singampattiana (Sebas. & A. N. Henry) Kumari & Chand, Trichopodium zeylanicum (Gaertn.) Thwaites. This is the same "Kani" Tribe along with JNTBRI through whom the wonder drug "Jeevani" (Drawn from the Trichopodium zeylunicum (Gaertn.) Thwaites) was formulated. Even United Nations shortlisted the "Kani" Tribal venture on "Jeevani" as a global model for benefits sharing experiment.

This book "Herbal Wealth of Western Ghats Agasthyamalai" is all about of the readers passion to understand Herbal Wealth which is the outcome of extensive survey conducted by the then CCRAS unit located at Palayamkottai Tamil Nadu. Sh.V.Chelladurai, Ex. R.O. (Botany), Dr. M.P.S. Subramanian, R.O. (Botany) CCRS and their team collected folk claims and the basic information. Dr.G.V.R.Joseph, A.D. (Botany) is instrumental in carrying out Digitization of Herbarium project with the assistance of supporting staff Dr.Jagdish Arya, A.R.O in CCRAS. He scanned all herbarium with utmost care and visited Agasthyar hill for the collection of basic information with photographs. The book provides an overview of various facts including updated botanical nomenclature, distribution, IUCN status, uses, threat perspective, formulation/s etc.. Safety/Toxicity and contra-indications were also covered on the reported plants. Information on folk claims of the reported plants, high quality images of plant and herbarium will certainly act as a ready reckoner for those who are working in herbal medicine sector. My deep appreciation to the work carried out by Dr.B.S.Sharma, Dr.M.M.Sharma and Dr.Sanjay Kumar Lale who put their sincere efforts in going through the Ayurvedic portion of the manuscript. I acknowledge Mrs.Rosy, Mrs.Prerna, Mrs.B.Susmitha, Mr.Ashish Tripathi for their invaluable support and assistance in compiling the text material of the book and secretarial assistance given by Md.Haroon Ansari, DEO, Mr. Sunil Rawat, DEO, Ms.Aarti Negi, DEO, Mr.Sushil Kumar Raturi, DEO, Mr.Jerson George Ex. DEO and Ms.Sunita Ex. DEO. My appreciation is due to Dr.M.M.Padhi, Ex. Dy. Director General for his unstinting cooperation who encouraged the team throughout the work. Special thanks is due to Prof.V.K.Joshi, Chairman, APC for his valuable and commendable suggestions.

Above all, I express my sincere thanks with gratitude to Sh.Ajit M. Sharan, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH for his encouragement and vision.

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