Starved of funds, Ayurveda college drops 'drops

In Sriramulu's home dt, a programme to save children is dying

‘Swarna bindu’ was administered free of cost, to all children below eight years, on the day of ‘Pushya nakshatra’ every month as per the Ayurveda medicinal practice. Parents, who believe that if administered regularly for 20 months, ‘swarna bindu’ strengthens the child’s immune system, used to bring their children without fail to the Ayurveda college every month.

The initiative, which began with a humble fund of Rs 2,000 by the staff of the college, became so popular over the months that it cost them nearly Rs 10,000 every month.
The college had requested the Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy (AYUSH) for grants to continue the programme.

Srikantaiah, Director, AYUSH, had even suggested that the college begin creating awareness about the orally-administered vaccine across the State. But, as the demand for grants was not addressed, the college had to stop even the monthly ‘swarna bindu’ programme, said sources in the college.  Now, the parents are charged Rs 50 to Rs 100 as fee.

Cashing in on the growing popularity of Ayurveda, some of the private practitioners allegedly cheated the parents by administering honey instead of ‘swarna bindu’, it is said.
College staff say the government should take initiative to launch the scheme State-wide on the lines of Maharashtra. That  would help in regulating the private practitioners and provide people with access to the vaccine across the State.

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