The traditional healing practitioners (Amjis) of the Himali region at a program expressed their utter dissatisfaction about state apathy towards their profession of using traditional healing methods in providing medical services to their patients in the country.
They complained that they were being deprived of government jobs by denying them the doctor’s license by not validating their medical profession. “I went up to Tibet and Bhutan to get a license for Amji though it was not given in Nepal,” said Amji Gyatso Bista the chairperson of the Himalayan Amji Association while speaking during a program organized by Center for Indigenous Peoples Research and Development (CIPRED) in Kathmandu Friday.
According to Bista, they were running schools to teach the Amji (healing practice) by obtaining permission from CTVT. Several clinics are being operated in various regions of the country. However, they don’t get recognition and validation from the Nepal Medical Council.
According to Dr. Tenjik Dharke Gurung, the chairperson of Sova Rigpa Association Sova Rigpa means medicine science. Its main source is the epic of Sova Rigpa. The history of Sova Rigpa, structures of the body, treatment methods of more than 400 diseases and methods to prepare medicines are given in this epic. And the person who practices this method is called Amji.
He also said that 90% of the Himali people, 45% of hill people and 20% of people in terai used this treatment method. Lord Buddha had started this treatment method. This method of treatment evolved when Buddha had initiated treating the sick monks and nuns, he added.
This treatment is related to Ayurveda method of using herbs for medicines for healing purpose rather than tantric methods. It has been handed down from one generation to another for a long time. “The healers (Amjis) of this region have gone up to Ladhak and Tibet to serve their patients by using this method of healing. And not giving value to their contribution within the country is a sorry state of affair,” said Narendra Lama, the chief of Manaslu Conservation area, who also studied about Amjis (healers) of Chum Numbri region, while speaking during the program.
Speaking during the same program the speakers Dr. Ganesh Man Gurung (former parliamentarian), CIPRED chairperson Dr. Pasang Sherpa, Dr. Pasang Dolma stressed the need for the state to take initiatives to develop, preserve and promote the knowledge of Amji (healing practice) as one of the traditional indigenous knowledge in the country.
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