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Conservation of Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats through Sacred Groves: Patent Issues and Challenges

This work briefly reviews the statistics of sacred groves conserving medicinal plants in Western Ghats and also explores the challenges in conserving Sacred Groves.

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Conservation of Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats through Sacred Groves: Patent Issues and Challenges

  1. 1. “What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a minor reflection of - What we are doing to ourselves and to one another”. -Mahatma Gandhi
  2. 2. Present By Saravanan. A Saagar gaikwad, LL.M- ii yr., Symbiosis law school, pune national seminar on intellectual property rights , date: 24-25th November 2012
  3. 3. Outline of the Presentation: • Introduction • Nature and Genesis of Sacred Groves • Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats • Conservation through Sacred Groves in Western Ghats • Threat to Sacred Groves • Endemic Species of Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats • Patent issues and challenges • Conservation Measures • Suggestion & Conclusion
  4. 4. Introduction: • India- one of the mega bio-diverse country in the world. • 35,000- Medicinal Plants all over the world & 8,000 are in India. • Indigenous people’s role • Sacred Groves
  5. 5. Nature of Sacred Groves: • Sacred groves are tracts of virgin forest with rich diversity, which have been protected by the local people for Centuries. • It have been Protected for their cultural & religious beliefs and protect the villagers from different calamities. • Sacred groves act as an ideal centre for conserving Medicinal biodiversity.
  6. 6. Genesis of Sacred Groves: • The first authentic report - Ward and Conner in 1827 • Brandis - in 1897 • Why western Ghats? • Medicinal wealth and one of the Biodiversity Hotspot
  7. 7. Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats: • Treasury House for medicinal plants. • More than 2000 medicinal species . • Medicinal plants represents lichen, algae, herbs, shrubs, climber and trees, which are annuals to perennials. • 50 species holds a very high value in the folk and herbal health forms for the treatment of different forms of ailments.
  8. 8. Conservation through Sacred Groves in Western Ghats: 1) Karnataka: Devar Kadu • Grove have been protected in the names of 165 different deities. • Documented Sacred Groves recorded are 1531. 2) Andhra Pradesh: Pavithravana • Documented Sacred Groves -580 • 400 sacred groves are exclusively conserving for Medicinal Plants.
  9. 9. Contn… 3) Kerala: Kavu, Sara Kavu • The number of documented Sacred Groves recorded are 299 4) Goa: Deorai & Pann • The documented Sacred Groves recorded are 55 5) Maharashtra: Devrai, Devrahati, & Devgudi • The documented SG recorded are 2820.
  10. 10. Contn… 6. Tamil Nadu: Swami Shola & Koilkadu • ‘vana-devatas’. • The numbers of documented Sacred Groves recorded are 752.
  11. 11. Threat to Sacred Groves: • Deforestation: - Entada phaseoloides, they supply deadwood for fuel • Rising International demand: - India supplied 10.055 tons of plants and 14 tons of vegetable alkaloid and their derivatives • Patent : - Medicinal plants are exploited by foreign pharmaceutical companies for patents
  12. 12. Endemic Species of Medicinal Plants in Western Ghats KARNATAKA TAMIL NADU KERALA MAHARASHTR A Aglaia elaeagnoidea(Juss.) Benth Artocarpus hirsutus Lam. Artocarpus hirsutus Lam. Artocarpus hirsutus Lam. Cinnamomum wightii Meisner Cinnamomum wightii Meisner Ervatamia heyneana Cooke. Artocarpus hirsutus Lam. Diopyros paniculata Dalz. Diopyros paniculata Dalz. Rauvolfia serpentina (L.) Benth. Ex Kurz. Cayratia pedata (Lam.) Juss. Ex Gagnep Garcinia gummi-gutta (L.) Robs. Garcinia gummi-gutta (L.) Robs. Diopyros paniculata Dalz. Garcinia indica Choiss Rhododendron arboreum (Zenk.) Tagg. Mucuna pruriens (L.) DC. Michelia nilagrica Zenk. Tabernamontana heyneana Wall. Rhododendron arboreum (Zenk.) Tagg.
  13. 13. Patent Issues & Challenges: 1) Turmeric: - Wound healing - University of Mississippi Medical Centre in 1995 - Complaint by CSIR 2) Neem: (Azadirachta indica) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture and a pharmaceutical research firm received a patent - Complaint by Government of India
  14. 14. Contn… 3) Jeevani: - Based on the herbal medicinal plant arogyapaacha used by Kani tribes. - Restorative, immuno-enhancing, anti-stress and anti-fatigue agent. - Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) Agreement and violation of customary rights of Kani tribes
  15. 15. Conservation Measures: 1) National Biodiversity Authority and State Biodiversity Boards 2) State Medicinal Plants Authorities 3) Kalakad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve: • 50 (36 Families) medicinal species conserved through Sacred Groves • Used for the treatment of Rheumatism
  16. 16. Contn… 4) Agasthiarmalai Biosphere Reserve: • 174 (69 families) medicinal plants 5) Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL): • Set up in 2005 by CSIR • Avesthagen- the first Indian patent to be revoked on the basis of the TKDL • GOI revoked this patent recently
  17. 17. Suggestions: • ‘Protected area Network’ • Ecological services rendered by Sacred Groves needs to be Highlighted. • People should made to realize that the conservation of groves is crucial for their sustenance.
  18. 18. Conclusion: Efforts have to be taken to bring to limelight the use of nature's doctors, methods to conserve them and to sustain their existence for the future generations.

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