You have been deeply involved with researching traditional tribal knowledge in various places in India. What first inspired you to become involved with Tribals and to research and document their traditional plant knowledge?
As a child I suffered a critical health disorder and the doctors wanted to operate on me। Someone suggested that my father should visit and meet with a certain herbal healer, who had the reputation of being an expert in curing this particular disorder. My father met him and asked him to treat me. He gave me an herbal treatment to for 30 days and amazingly I was all well at the end of the 30th day. It was like a miracle and even the doctors, who had wanted to operate, could not believe it. Two decades later, after I completed my master's degree in Plant Sciences and started my PhD in medicinal herbs, I wished to meet that herbal healer. But, when I reached the village where he had lived, I was told that he had passed away 10 years earlier. I was deeply upset over his demise. Nobody ever documented his knowledge, nor did his children tried to learn it. It was a great loss. That day I knew that my mission was to scout out and document the traditional herbal knowledge of the tribal people.
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