Uttarakhand has a new plan. The state government has decided that it will soon begin a search in the Himalayas for a mythical plant believed to hold life-saving properties.
According to reports, the government will spend Rs 25 crore to look for the herb Sanjeevani Booti.
The mythical plant is said to have saved Lord Rama's brother, Lakshman, as told in the Ramayana.
"We have set an initial budget of 250 million rupees ($37 million) for the project," Surendra Singh Negi, the state's minister for alternative medicine, told AFP.
The problem in this grand project is that the plant is 'mythical'. There is no evidence that it ever existed. In fact, ancient sages and modern researchers have also failed to find it.
However, Negi said, "If we are determined we will certainly find it."
The search would focus on the Dronagiri range of Himalayas near the Chinese border.
This is because the Ramayana mentions one of the mountains in the range as being the site where the magical herb grows.
According to the Ramayana, Lord Rama had asked Hanuman to fetch the life-saving herb after a healer said it would cure his dying brother Lakshman.
But, when Hanuman failed to identify the plant, he uprooted the entire mountain and carried it thousands of miles to treat Lakshman.
India's 5,000-year-old medicine system Ayurveda, which uses herbs to cure ailments, has been revived under Narendra Modi's government. However, the central government has refused to fund this project. So, Uttarakhand will do it with their own state budget.Suggest a correction