Gadchiroli district is the abode of diversity. The erstwhile forted hillocks ( Gad = fort; Chiroli= hillocks ) has deep rooted traditions and known for traditional health healers using medicinal herbs. Gondwana Herbs Project was started by Gadchiroli forest department to revamp the traditional heath practices.
For conserving the medicinal plants and traditional know how forest department of Gadchiroli has carried out the following activities
Total identification of Flora of Gadchiroli District
Development of biodiversity parks
Organisation of vaidhu sammelan
Collection of NTFP at MSP and setting up of storageand processing units (Tie up with ayurvedic pharmacy companies for the sale of medicinal plant products )
1.Total identification of flora of Gadchiroli District
“A checklist of vascular plants of Gadchiroli district “ yadav and Rashmi chakravarthi under technical guidance of Prof. M.R.Almeida .A total of 1909 plant species identified in the forests of Gachiroli. In the book Medicinal plants are given special focus.The book also guides people on how to make peoples got pictorial and location details of the plant species that are found district.
The book is like a mirror to the forest flora of Gadchiroli district
It also has got special sections on intresting plants of Gad district like Bhulan vel etc.
2. Development of biodiversity parks
The biodiversity parks are established with Elliptical gardens the sector design of the 108 medicinal plants to treat different ailments act as ex-situ conservation area of medicinal plants Daily students from different schools and colleges and other public gain a lot from these parks
The eight sectoral design with 108 species with herbs, shrubs and trees deals with specific systems. This model was initially grounded in Mughal gardens New Delhi developed by Shri. Chandra shekar rao IFS
3.Organisation of Vaidhu Sammelan:
Three vaidhu sammelans were organised by forest department of Gadchiroli healers were gatherd and their traditional knowledge was recorded which introduction and registration of breaking of Ice and an eye opener and removed the misconception that traditional medical practioners do not reveal/share their knowledge.
In the second sammelan there is an opening of ayurvedic doctor room in Semana garden was done where in the vaidhus carry out examination of patients who visit the park. Enlisting of specific plants which are required in larger quantities and some in minimum quantities which are becoming extinct was listed out during this sammellen and District evel federation of vaidhus was carried out during this samallen.
During the third samellan field visit of area to bridge the gap between local name and scientific name available plants in the area and identified near about 107 medicinal plants of various uses and d listing was carried out. A buyer seller meet During the third samellan field visit of taxonomist and vaidhu was arranged to the MPCA area an in to bridge the gap between local name and scientific name has been organized. Group discussion in field on the and identified near about 107 medicinal plants of various uses and d uyer seller meet was organized in this samellan. was arranged to the MPCA area an in-situ conservation Group discussion in field on the and identified near about 107 medicinal plants of various uses and disease specific species
Visit to Medicinal Plant conservation area and field observations and open house discussions
4. Establishment of Medicinal plant processising centre:
The collection and processising unit of medicinal plant was started on 2 october 2013 under the trade mark of Gondwana Herbs. This facility centre is being operated by the members of district vaidhu federation. Minimum support price for 100 herbs has been declared and as now 42 different medicinal plants have been collected and their products are being produced by this centre. The drying areas, pre pulvirizer , pulvirizer and sievers are made to use in the centre. Weighing and packing areas are also present.
The records of the material reaching the centre and the place of origin and others are also being maintained properly.The centre is taking its perfect shape based on the suggestions made by the dignitaries and medicinal herb specialists and so on.
Recently an outlet for sale of these products is also opened by forest department.
The centre slowly transformed like an educational centre as students from ayurvedic college do visit the area and gather information. The products developed in the centre were also sent to labs for testing of alkaloid contents and other active ingredients present in these products. The herbal unit also applied for drug licensing also.
Thus the initiative by the forest division Gadchiroli is bringing up awareness about traditional health practices, providing employment to the medicinal plant collectors, supplying pure, natural and organic products to the consumers.
The total product collection created employment by collection of medicinal plants worth Rs.3.5 lakhs as on today and benefited 147 families.