Thiruvananthapuram | The fifth edition of the Global Ayurveda Festival (GAF 2023) will be held in the State capital from December 1 to 5, focusing on projecting Ayurveda's huge potential in addressing the health challenges of the present world and setting a platform for global networking of Ayurveda practitioners and stakeholders.
The focal theme of the GAF 2023 is "Emerging Challenges in Healthcare & A Resurgent Ayurveda," Minister of State for External Affairs and Parliamentary Affairs, V Muraleedharan, who is the Chairman of the Organising Committee, told at a press conference here on Friday.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is the Chief Patron of the Organising Committee, which has 200-plus members from all segments of Ayurveda.
The biennial event is being organised by the Centre for Innovation in Science and Social Action (CISSA) in association with Ministry of Ayush, Government of India; Department of Ayush; Government of Kerala; Ayurveda fraternity represented by AMAI, AMMOI, AHMA, KISMA, ADMA, Viswa Ayurveda Parishad and 14 other Ayurveda Associations at the Greenfield International Stadium, Karyavattom.
The conclave will witness convergence of many top scientists, including Nobel Laureates, and 7,500 delegates from 75 countries. Over 750 research papers would be presented at various sessions of the meet, besides 750 poster presentations on the sidelines.
It is significant to note that GAF 2023 is happening in the backdrop of the Union Government making major efforts to position Ayurveda as a holistic system to address grim health challenges staring at humanity, Muraleedharan said and added that it is the largest event in the country in Ayurveda.
The Union Minister said the event would also seek how to present Ayurveda effectively in the tourism sector, which can contribute immensely to the development of Kerala. "Already, Ayurveda is an important segment in tourism in Kerala. It accounts for a substantial portion of the revenue generated by the tourism sector," Muraleedharan said.
He recalled that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief guest at the valedictory function of the third edition of the GAF held in Kozhikode in 2016. Modi also inaugurated the fourth edition of the event held virtually due to the pandemic.
"Ayurveda has already started transcending its native borders. In India, it has been firmly established as a strong and effective segment of our healthcare sector. It's time that Ayurveda was promoted globally in a systematic and scientific manner. The primary focus of the conclave will be on this vital aspect," Muraleedharan said.
The event would provide a platform to tell the entire world about the time-tested ancient system of medicine and wellness, facilitate collaborative research initiatives, formalise partnerships and firm up policies, the Minister added.
GAF Working Chairman Dr G G Gangadharan said GAF 2023 would explore possibilities of increasing investment, export, and trade in the Ayurveda sector with the support of industry associations. Participation of Ambassadors of these nations in India would be ensured at GAF as part of its global promotion, he said.
A major highlight of the GAF is the Arogya Expo with around 500 stalls that would bring together businesses, organisations, and other institutions from across the globe to showcase their products, services, and technologies related to Ayurveda. Ayush clinics, medicinal plants and education expo would be part of it.
The expo would offer a unique opportunity for visitors to explore and experience the world of Ayurveda, including Ayurvedic medicines, herbal products, wellness services, and Ayurvedic equipment. It also would facilitate interactions among exhibitors and visitors, providing a space for networking, collaboration and sharing of knowledge and expertise.
As a prelude to the GAF, Grand Kerala Ayurveda Fair (GKAF) would be held in all districts of Kerala from November 1 to 30.
GKAF would bring together all Ayurveda institutions, associations and organisations to highlight the strength of the system before the public. Various activities and competitions would also be organised in school-college and resident association levels. It would be a mass contact programme with everybody connected to Ayurveda in the State participating to make it a people-friendly one