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Seminar and exhibition on medicinal and aromatic plants held at Islamabad

Islamabad, June 19, 2013 (PPI-OT): Pakistan Museum of Natural History (PMNH) and National Rural Support Program (NRSP) jointly organized an exhibition and seminar on medicinal plants’ value in the rural areas of Swat under the USAID-Entrepreneurs project named “Value Chain Development Project for Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAP), Swat”.

The aim of this project is to help and support the far flung rural communities and revitalize appropriate and rational utilization of MAPs under value chain marketing practices. The project undertakes conservation measures to preserve the habitat and regenerate the endangered or threatened species. USAID-Entrepreneurs, MEDA-Pakistan and NRSP are jointly working for successful outcome of the project through all possible efforts.

This event, which was a joint venture of PMNH and NRSP, focused on promotion of medicinal and aromatic plants. Stalls from different Herbal Pharmaceutical companies, distributors and research organizations were displayed on the occasion, who demonstrated both their un-processed and commercial products.

An important segment of this event was the seminar which begun with the recitation of a few verses from Holy Quran. Prof. Dr. Khalil Ahmed Ibupoto, Member Science PSF and Acting Chairman PSF was the Chief Guest of the event. Mr. Wilayat Khan, MAPs Marketing Coordinator, briefed about the project importance and its execution with the help of USAID to highlight the significance of medicinal plants in rural areas of Swat. Presentations were also made by professionals and scholars. Mr. Ghulam Rasool Balouch, CEO SSEWA-Pak, Mirpurkhas, focused on the resources and utilization of “Neem” for domestic as well as a medicinal use.

He further said that there is need to explore and vitalize the use of Neem in our society. Dr. Rahmatullah Qureshi from PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi shared about the “Medicinal Desert Flora” of Sindh and Punjab and their value as domestic medicine. Dr.M.K. Leghari, Director, BSD, PMNH, briefed about the Botanical Sciences Division PMNH and its role regarding research, preservation of specimen and public education.

In his remarks Dr. Ata-ul-Mohsin, Director General, PMNH appreciated the efforts of all stakeholders for playing their role to make this activity a success. He over viewed the role of medicinal plants in cure and treatment of human diseases and their future prospects. He emphasized the collaborative efforts of the stakeholders to explore, promote and conserve plant sources for future generations.

Dr. Muhammad Akram Shaikh, DG, PASTIC stressed on conservation of this natural resource and also mentioned that PASTIC will digitize all related information and make it available as database. Mr. Derald Smart, Marketing andDevelopment Advisor MEDA PAK in his address talked about the program execution of USAID and MEDA PAK in ongoing activities related to conservation of flora, marketing and better livelihoods of local communities.

The Chief Guest, Prof. Dr. Khalil Ahmed Ibupoto, Member Science PSF and Acting Chairman PSF, appreciated the joint efforts of PMNH and NRSP to organize this event. He said that medicinal plants are a source of treatment for many diseases and many areas of Pakistan are blessed by the Al-Mighty Allah with this treasure. The need is to discover them and to use them properly.

He also expressed the need of joint collaboration for this cause and ensure for the support from PSF in carrying over any research based effort related to conservation, promotion and commercialization process. The Chief Guest along with representatives of various organizations and participants visited the stalls, organized by various herbal pharmaceutical companies/ organization and exchanged his views.

For more information, contact:
Pakistan Science Foundation
1-Constitution Avenue,
Sector G-5/2, Islamabad
Pakistan
Tel: + 92 51 9202469-70
Fax: + 92 51 9202468

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