Karnataka Indian Medicine Manufacturers Association (KIMMA) and the State Department of Ayush have jointly requested the Union government to draw up guidelines on the collection and transportation of herbs and medicinal plants sourced by the Ayush industry.
In this regard, it has taken a first step to provide the Karnataka State Bio-diversity Board about the details of the medicinal plants utilised by the Karnataka industry along with information on the source of its collection and procurement.
“Unless the Union government draws guidelines for collection/ transportation of such collected materials to other states it is not possible to regulate the collection and transport of these materials. Karnataka state bio-diversity board insists that the herbal drug industry should provide the information regarding geographical location from where these materials are collected. But this information is not available to the industry and they are unable to provide the same. However, we are making the best efforts to ensure that industry in the state can list out the source,” JSD Pani, president, KIMMA told Pharmabiz.
Out of 188 Ayush drug manufacturing units in Karnataka, 80 units are in and around Bengaluru and most of them are tiny and housed in the residential/commercial hubs of the city. Most of these units do procure raw-materials from the traders across the country and the address of such traders is provided to state bio-diversity board, he added.
In order to highlight and discuss issues impacting the development of the Ayush sector which included the Enforcement of Karnataka Biodiversity Act and its effect on tiny industries, Pollution Control Board approvals to tiny and small units in green category, recent amendments to Drugs & Cosmetics (D&C) Rules 1945, draft notification on Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) for approved drug test and in-house test labs, both Karnataka department of Ayush and KIMMA along with the Ayurvedic Drug Manufacturers' Association (ADMA) officials met with the 100 industry chiefs in the state. The meeting also indicated the incentives from Karnataka Department of Ayush to set up new units and additional new facilities. The Association and the department had also discussed about the industry proposals on the concession to be incorporated in the State budget 2013-14.
Commenting on the stand taken by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) on not according permission to herbal units, Pani pointed out that the move was strongly protested by the industry. He said that the Ayush industry stated that the flour mills, hotels and restaurants were permitted operation in similar hubs by the State Pollution Control Board. In fact the pollution generated by these establishments was much higher than the non-polluting tiny Ayurveda units.
KIMMA had given a representation to the KSPCB and its former chairman gave the assurance to constitute a committee which would include KIMMA and the State Ayush dept to study the status of these tiny units and give report. Now with the change of guard at the KSPCB, the representation is now in cold storage. Efforts are now on to take up the issue and find a viable solution with the new KSPCB, said Pani.