Prof. Asim Ali Khan
Since its establishment in 1978, Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM), an autonomous organization under the Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India is actively engaged in research and development activities on the applied as well as fundamental aspects of Unani Medicine. Over the past four decades of its existence, the Council has made significant strides in clinical research, drug standardization, survey and cultivation of medicinal plants, and literary research. Besides, research-oriented health extension services activities related to information, education and communication (IEC) have also been part of the Council’s programmes. We have a dedicated team of scientists and technical manpower with an overall regular staff strength of around 780 people working in a network of 23 centres spread all over the country. Council has done noteworthy work in providing general medical care to the patients, bringing out innovative research outcomes, obtaining patents and bringing out scientific publications in various journals of international and national repute. The Clinical research aims towards developing new drugs as well as validating traditional Unani therapies and drugs by adopting appropriate modern research methodology and technology without losing the system’s traditional character. Under the literary research programme, we are engaged in translating classical Arabic and Persian books into Urdu and other languages. We are also involved in digitizing manuscripts and reprinting of out of print classical books. To ensure quality of Unani medicinal products, we are actively engaged in drug standardization program and have developed pharmacopoeial standards for 298 single drugs and 100 compound formulations which have been published in Unani pharmacopoeia of India.
It is our mandate to strive for excellence and in this endeavor we are collaborating with premium institutes like Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute (VPCI), Lady Hardinge Medical College, Jamia Hamdard, Jamia Millia Islamia at New Delhi, Indian Institute of Integrative Medicine (IIIM), Jammu, Deccan Medical College, Hyderabad and Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College & Ajmal Khan Tibbiya College, Aligarh Muslim University. We believe in multi stakeholder consultation approach and are having active interface with academia, industry and research organizations.
We are also actively engaged in achieving the goals of National Health Policy 2017 which lay emphasis on mainstreaming of AYUSH systems. The Council is actively participating in the Swasthya Rakshan Programme through its 12 clinical centres and working on integration of Unani Medicine in National Programme for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke (NPCDCS) in Lakhimpur Kheri (UP). We are also engaged in School Health Program with an aim to improve the health and hygiene status of school children through health care and health education. Council is also involved in various special health sub plans for scheduled caste and scheduled tribes by way of adopting villages with dominant population.
Survey and cultivation of medicinal plants is an important program being implemented by the Council. The herbarium sheets are maintained for the collected specimens and digitization activities are undergoing in various institutes. Our Institutes have also conducted ethnobotanical surveys and documented folk claims in forest areas of different states and brought out publications in this regard.
India, with a robust infrastructure and well regulated system of practice, is the world leader in Unani medicine and is making its mark at global front. We have a provision of establishing academic chairs and explore institute to institute collaboration by entering into an agreement. We have set up academic chairs in countries like South Africa and Bangladesh. In a recently organized International Conference on Unani medicine in February, 2018 we had representation from 12 countries which included Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, Hungary, Israel, Portugal, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, U.A.E, U.K and U.S.A where we had fruitful deliberations and keen interest was generated for developing linkages for collaboration in the field of Unani medicine.
The Council has been working and intends to continue its efforts for opening new possibilities and opportunities to deal with persistent and emerging medical and health problems particularly in the areas of communicable and non-communicable diseases.
I hope the hard work and commitment of the scientists will help the Council achieve its goals and attain new heights in the area of scientific research in Unani Medicine for the sole benefit of the humanity.
Prof. Asim Ali Khan
Director General, CCRUM