Guwahati, Saturday, December 18, 2010

Books on medicinal plants attracting buyers
Staff Reporter
 GUWAHATI, Dec 17 – He is the odd man out amid the bustling trade in books, yet his mission seems to be succeeding. Those interested in herbs and medicinal plants have been making a beeline to his stall in the ongoing 12th North East Book Fair at Chandmari.

 Modest as ever, Dr Gunaram Khanikar acknowledges that people in increasing numbers have been buying his publications.

One of the few people of the region who have documented and carried out extensive research on medicinal herbs of Assam, he has over a long time promoted their use in a range of fields. This year’s book fair has seen 62 of his books made available to the reading public.

Poriyalor Bonousodhi, a new release is among those titles which have attracted buyers, not to mention Sahaj Labhya Banousadhi, another popular book.

Speaking to The Assam Tribune he said that his publications have sought to focus on the great value of medicinal herbs, some of which are not well known among the people. “Even from a single plant like the Tulsi, many beneficial applications could be made, a fact illustrated in one of the books…other publications focus on herbs in the diet, and herbs for use for specific ailments,” Dr Khanikar mentioned.

From his extensive travels in various parts of the State and neighbouring areas, the walking encyclopaedia on medicinal herbs has been able to document a wide array of plants. One of his works on sale, Eso Ek Saak Paasoli, acquaints the reader to many of those.

Not content to reach out to an audience through books, Dr Khanikar has for the first time created an audio album which features songs on medicinal herbs. The album, Sisur Bonousadhir Geet, features songs which reveal the influence of medicinal herbs on various facets of human health.

The promoter of herbal medicines is of the firm belief that people should know more about their use and beneficial effects. “They are a part of our natural heritage, and we must protect, and promote them for the welfare of all concerned,” he noted.