Patronage has increased for Siddha medicines during last year post corona outbreak in Tamil Nadu, reported The New Indian Express on April 4. The report goes on to highlight how over several thousands of patients including the asymptomatic ones benefitted by the native medicinal system (Ref.1). Since the report is about Tamil Nadu state, it talks about Siddha. Similar such reports from other parts of the country also indicate that more and more people gravitate towards Ayurveda and “alternative” medicine.
In quite contrast to this, we get to hear a shrill voice that runs down the native medicinal systems. We are not able to brush it aside as this opinion is expressed by an Allopath. The person is none but the newly elected President of Indian Medical Association Dr. Johnrose Austin Jayalal. He hails from Kuzhithurai, Kanyakumari district, Tamil Nadu. He is a professor of surgery in the government medical college, Tirunelveli. He was interviewed by MORGAN LEE, of Christianity Today an evangelical Christian periodical founded in 1956 by Billy Graham. Austin has shared some ‘ pearls of wisdom ‘in his interview. (Ref.2)
He feels that modern medicine (read Allopathy) is scientific and hence means that Ayurveda, Siddha, Homeopathy, Unani, etc all are ‘ unscientific’. Though he makes a passing remark that ‘We are not against any system’ the interview amply displays his opposition to Union Health Ministry’s efforts to promote AYUSH. He proudly claims that as President of IMA he would vigorously take forward the protests and demonstrations against Union Government.
Is it scientific?
A general reader may feel that Dr. Johnrose Austin Jayalal’s views are based on scientific studies. We will dissect it further to know the truth. Ayurveda and Siddha have evolved in this land over millenia. Very many eminent western scholars have been drawn to study our native systems and they have vouchsafed the efficacy of our medicines and practices. Just three names: Edward Jenner, Ronald Ross and Louis Pasteur. Even a quick glance will reveal the contribution of Bharatiya systems in the development of their works and vaccines. Why go that far? Even today in Western countries, pharmaceutical and cosmetic products with herbal base have a large market. Would those clients come again and again if they had not found those products meeting their needs or if they had suffered due to any side-effects?
In any scientific enquiry, evidences play an important role and personal observation or pratyaksha pramaanam is one of the most acceptable types of evidences. As we have seen, in the course of many discoveries or inventions, personal observations have proved to be the turning points that made the scientists or explorers to initiate or refine their approach. Dr. JA Jayalal starts with the basic premise that everything with regard to native systems has nothing to boast of! He refuses to consider vital forms of evidence. How can we expect a fair scientific unbiased approach from him?
Bias, not one
Dr. Jayalal’s bias is not limited to rivalry between systems, namely Allopathy versus Ayurveda. His long innings at the Left-infested IMA has rendered him a fellow traveller of Comrades. In fact, many like him consider it to be politically rewarding. It is common knowledge, how much pressure leftists exercise in any forum to bamboozle, browbeat and bulldoze to carry out their agenda. Therefore, no wonder that Dr. Jayalal cannot stomach any initiative of the Central government to promote and nurture Bharatiya medicinal systems that the general public have been demanding for long. He happily joins the chorus of false allegation: “They (Govt. of India) want to make it one nation, one system of medicine.”
Note the Communal bias too
In the same interview, Jayalal has revealed his true colours. Read the following statements made by this Doctor –
“I firmly believe that wherever you are or in whatever position you are, you can be a Christian doctor. You can be a Christian police officer or work in the revenue department. The place does not decide how you are going to be a Christian. The opportunity in front of every Christian is splendid. My primary concern when I work as a Christian doctor is to ensure that I have time to talk about the mental well-being and spiritual healing of the person. We need more Christian doctors to work more in secular institutions, mission institutions, and medical colleges.”
Thus, his agenda is no more hidden. He does not have any qualm to say that he would exploit the vulnerability of the patients to carry out his evangelical activities.
Here, we recall what late Thanulinga Nadar, first President of Hindu Munnani said in early 80s – “Hindu officials think of serving the Hindu causes after retirement whereas their counterparts from minority communities happily serve the agenda of their community right from day one of their service.”