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Indian Traditions in Debrecen

The first ever Ayurveda Chair in Europe is going to be inaugurated in Debrecen. An agreement was signed on Wednesday by the heads of the University of Debrecen and those of the Indian AYUSH Academy.

“Western medicine is not able to prevent chronic diseases or offer rehabilitative treatments for them, nor does it know the answer to the question of how we could preserve our health, while Ayurveda, with a history of five thousand years, can efficiently take care of all these concerns.  It represents a complex field that comprises food science, pharmacology, philosophy, research in natural sciences, massage, and kinetic energy development. The University of Debrecen is willing to embrace alternative Asian medicine and it supports the idea that this efficient medical practice should be available to students in Hungary too,” said Professor Zoltán Szilvássy at the press conference about the establishment of an Ayurveda Chair in Debrecen.

An organic part of our cooperation is the incorporation of the ayurvedic curriculum into the graduate program of UD with the support of the Indian government and AYUSH Academy.

His Excellency Shri Malay Mishra, India’s ambassador to Hungary, said at the press conference that the first Ayurveda center in Europe would be launched in Debrecen, where it will hopefully be involved in product development as well as in efforts to access the European marketplace. This ancient body of knowledge will be introduced at the University of Debrecen by an Indian expert with 35 years of teaching and healing experience, who is going to join the Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy in order to coordinate the work on curriculum development at the Ayurveda Chair. The ambassador added that Debrecen had been chosen for the location of the project because it is a hub of pharmaceutical production and it can provide all the necessary knowledge required for the venture. In addition, both Rector Szilvássy and Mayor Lajos Kósa fully supported the initiative right from the beginning, for which Shri Malay Mishra expressed his gratitude and appreciation.

Shri Nilanjan Sanyal, Secretary of AYUSH, noted that, in our aging society, there are more and more new diseases the treatment of which is not necessarily efficient if it is based on the traditional methods, for which reason the combination and complementation of western medicine with ayurvedic teachings and practices could be the most salubrious way for the benefit of the entire society.

Vice-Mayor László Papp contended that the city of Debrecen would be ready to provide all the help necessary for establishing, operating, and maintaining the Ayurveda center, since one of the key sectors in this city is the health industry. According to the vice-mayor, it is important in the global competition to approach this sector with an attitude that could be exemplary for our country as well as for Europe. Transplanting eastern medicine and healing into European practice and its harmonization with the latter could be exactly such a point of departure.

“In Debrecen, there has been a first-rate cooperation between the municipal government, the university, and the companies in the health industry. This so-called “golden triangle” represents a sizeable potential, which we need to put to good use. This is exemplified by the joint projects and cooperation in the pharmaceutical and thermal water clusters as well as in the development of functional food items,” concluded László Papp.

The rector also highlighted the fact that the establishment of the Ayurveda Chair is just the first step in the process of the cooperation. Findings of joint scientific and medical research are also expected to be put to the best of uses in a future Ayurveda Institute or even in an Ayurveda hospital unit.

Press Office
Széchenyi