Former President APJ Abdul Kalam today said India should make use of its rich biodiversity and wide variety of medicinal plants to tap the global market for herbal medicines, on the lines of China and Japan.
Addressing the 39th convocation of BAMS graduates at the Government Ayurveda College here, he said demands for herbal remedies and traditional medicinal products are fast increasing worldwide and India had a tremendous potential in promoting this.
"Japan and China have successfully marketed their traditional medicinal products abroad and they are well accepted in the European market. But compared to these countries, India is not at all seen anywhere in the global market," he said.
He also noted that India had potential in promoting floriculture and aquaculture in a big way.
Pointing out the significance of Ayurveda, Kalam said it was a system based on natural medicine devoid of toxicity.
"The best way of prevention of diseases is through Ayurveda. Because it is a comprehensive system, since it is based on natural medicine which is devoid of toxicity," he said.
People are still falling sick even though the medical technology is advanced, he said adding that Ayurveda can enhance the immunity of the human body and make it better resistant to diseases.
Kalam suggested that the curriculum of government Ayurveda colleges be research oriented as teaching would not be perfect without research.
State Health Minister VS Sivakumar, who presided, said the Kerala government was considering a proposal to set up an Ayurveda university to promote studies and research.
He also said government was busy framing an action plan to use Ayurveda for fighting lifestyle diseases.
Around 70 students graduated at the function organised at the college campus in the heart of the city.