Jaipur, May 29: Nurseries of the Rajasthan Forest department are developing hundreds and thousands of medicinal plant saplings that shall soon be gifted to state residents as part of state government's Ghar Ghar Aushadhi Yojana.
The mega scheme plans to reach out to all 1,26,50,000 families residing in the state (according to census 2011), extending them an opportunity to take home saplings of the four selected medicinal herbs, namely Tulsi, Ashwagandha, Gilloy and Kalmegh. In the five-year duration of the scheme, each family shall be entitled to receive 24 saplings, starting with eight saplings in the first year, that aggregates to more than 30 crore saplings.
A budget announcement by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, the massive plant gift campaign is intended to bolster the beneficial relationship between plants and people. These plants have been native to Rajasthan and have traditionally been used as health supplements and in herbal medicines. As part of the campaign the plant saplings will be provided with information on their upkeep and proper use.
"Rajasthan is rich in biodiversity and is home to several medicinal plants. The Ghar Ghar Aushadhi Yojana of the state government will help in conservation of this natural wealth and help people understand the importance of herbs and plants around them for health," said Sreya Guha, Principal Secretary Forest and Environment Department, Rajasthan.
Several of the state government departments are contributing to make the scheme a success. While the Forest Department is the nodal department for the scheme, district level task forces have been constituted in all districts under their respective District Collectors to ensure due implementation at ground level. The scheme will be monitored by a state level committee headed by the state chief secretary.
A fund of Rs 210 crore has been sanctioned by the state government for the five-year scheme, of which Rs 31.4 crore will be spent in the first year for distributing more than 5 crore saplings among half of the households in state. The following year an equal number of saplings will be distributed among remaining families. Every family will receive eight saplings at a time, two of each of the four herbs. In five years every family will receive in total 24 saplings. The distribution process is scheduled to commence from the monsoon season.
Probably India's largest medicinal herb promotion programme, the Ghar Ghar Aushadhi Yojana of Rajasthan government arrives at a time when humanity is grappling with a pandemic.