The Ministry of Ayush in India has decided to re-examine the matter pertaining to the use of Ashwagandha — Withania somnifera — leaves in Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani (ASU) drugs by constituting an expert group to this end.
The Ayush Ministry earlier had directed ASU drug manufacturers to refrain from the usage of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) leaves, saying that no substantial evidence and literature is available to endorse the efficacy of crude drug or extract of Ashwagandha.
The Ministry also issued an advisory to all ASU Drugs Manufacturers Associations seeking the manufacturers of the crude drug/extracts, sellers, ASU drug manufacturing companies, ASU drug exporters not to use Withania somnifera leaves either in crude or extract or any other form for therapeutic purposes under the ambit of ASU drugs.
“No substantial evidence and literature is available to endorse the efficacy of crude drug/extract of Withania somnifera leaves. Considering this, it would not be appropriate to consider the Withania somnifera leaves as ASU medicine at this stage,” the ministry had said in its advisory.
However, after industry’s intervention, the Ayush Ministry invited the stakeholders to discuss their concerns about utilization of Ashwagandha leaves in ASU products.
After the discussion with the ASU industry partners, the Ministry of Ayush has decided to set up an expert group to re-examine the advisory issued to the drug manufacturers to refrain from using Ashwagandha leaves.
The group will make appropriate recommendations to the Centre on the use of Ashwagandha leaves and Panchanga of Ashwagandha in ASU products based on scientific evidence. (IANS)