Monday, November 20, 2017
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Dr. USmani

It is unfair on the part of the practitioners of one therapy to condemn another just to show that their own is the better one. Recently I was informed that some allopath told a journalist that people should not go after Ayurvedic or Unani medicines and that the best treatment was provided by them alone.

That was an unfair comment because our own  eastern systems of medicine have worked miracles. And didn’t Indians survive on these very medicines for centuries, some  living up to 100 years if not more? The arrival of allopathy was undoubtedly a boon and we should salute our MBBS doctors who have on many an occasion brought people back to life when they were on the brink of death.
But sometimes other systems do work miracles. If you meet a Homoeopath he will tell you how successful their small, sweet pills have been where other systems have failed.  The Ayurvedic and  Unani systems of medicine can also boast of performing such wonders.  And it is with regard to the  Unani system that I would like to reveal something interesting. But I have with me a letter that Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru wrote to daughter Indira Gandhi in 1957 when he was the Prime Minister and the best of medical expertise was available and accessible to him from any corner of the world. Even so, what he wrote to Indiraji is something worth noting. The letter appears in a book titled ‘Two Alone’ (published by Penguin Books, India, 2004) and edited by Sonia Gandhi.  The letter, dated March 4, 1957, says: ‘Indu darling, Please put an end to your touring now.  It is folly to overdo this business. I am told that you are pressed to go to Jabalpur. You should not go. I have just been there’ In the next para Panditji says: ‘Lal Bahadur tells me that Hakim Usmani saw you—I think it would be a good thing if you took his tonics. Hakim Usmani, I am told,  said to you that the PSP(Praja Socialist Party)people are threatening...You can assure Usmani that no one should worry about these threats. We shall deal with the matter adequately if anyone misbehaves--All my love, Papu’   This letter speaks about the fame that the late Dr Hakim Usmani enjoyed as a good healer. I can vouch for it too because in 1954, when my mother, bed-ridden for months had been given up as a gone case even by Dr Grace Edwards Brar and treatment by all medicos had failed, Hakim Usmani left us all wonderstruck by curing her. She lived for 35 years more thereafter. But I wanted to know who that PSP leader was who had threatened  Hakim Usmani. I asked his grandson, Dr Saad Usmani about it. He did reveal the name but said that subsequently he had joined the Congress and that once, when he was critically ill, he had requested Hakim Saab to treat him –which he did.

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