Ethnomedicinal Plant Resources of Tribe of Vindhyan Region of Madhya Pradesh

 

Prof. Skand Kumar Mishra

Head, Botany and Biotechnology, Govt. New Science College, Rewa (M.P)486001

*Corresponding Author E-mail: skandbt@gmail.com

 


1. INTRODUCTION:

Today, human beings, particularly the urbanites, are far removed from their plant, benefactors. But the rural and aboriginal folk are very much in harmony with nature for their various needs; they depend largely on plants. But due to rapid modernization, acculturation and resultant greatly enhanced needs; this environmental harmony is getting disturbed. Rural folk are often discarding their age old traditions and are getting absorbed into the process of modernization.

 

However, there still exist many ethnic groups and cultures that strive to maintain their age old wisdom and cultures. Modern science has borrowed much of its basic knowledge from these cultures, particularly that relating to food and medicine from plants. But since these cultures too are getting influenced by the economic, scientific and technological changes, it is essential to study them before their knowledge is lost.

 

Vindhyan region in Madhya Pradesh located between 24045' to 25045' N latitudes and 75038' to 82050' E longitude. The total area of the region is 38370 sq.km. This area is known for natural forests and tribes. The tropical deciduous forests of the area are full of biodiversity. The Vindhyan region is the area of tribe according to 2011 census the tribe population of the region was 28.3%. The 30 types of tribe include mainly Gond, Baiga, Kol, Panika, Khairwar, Pao, Majhi, and Agaria etc.

 

The tribes and local forests are intimately correlated socially and economically the tribes depend on forest their behaviors working convention and agriculture practices are in relation to the natural protection. They have developed their own methods of conserving many species which they felt are at the verge of extinction. The present study, therefore, aim to investigate the uses of ethnomedicinal plants of Vindhyan region and priorities in conservation and management of these plants.

 

METHODOLOGY:

Ethnobotanical works on of Vindhyan region are not sufficient enough. The recent publications of Lal and Dubey(1992), Sikarwar and Maheshwari (1992), Dwivedi and Pandey (1992), Mishra et.al (1993), Verma and Khan (1993), Verma et.al. (1995), Jain (1996), Upadhyay and Singh (1998), Rai and Nath (2006), Mishra (2007),MishraandTiwari(2010) etc. give supplementary information on ethnobotany among the tribals of study area.

 

This work is the result of personal observations made after carefully planned field work among the tribals during August 2013 to August 2014.The major part of the field work was confined at the highest concentration of the tribals. Some villages of other localities were also studied. The local informants were of five types, picked up by selected and random sampling methods: 1.the medicinemen, 2.village headmen, priests and other prominent leaders, their wives and other women, 3.the interpreters, 4.men and women working in the field, and 5.men and women in weekly market and other common places. One or more medicine men were included in the team during data collection trips. Twenty medicine men and about 190 others, i.e. in all, about 210 people, have contributed to the information reported in this study. Each medicinal use was crosschecked with at least 10 informants.

 

During field work, personal observations on the environment and ecology, flora, agricultural practices and agro-economy, subsistence of food, plant resources management, conservational aspects, the people and their life, and so on were also noted in the field book. Reports of the interpreter, guide, medicinemen and other knowledgeable people were also recorded. At least 4-6 voucher specimens of each ethnobotanically important plant were collected and numbered. Their description, reported uses, and other details were entered in the field book on the spot. These specimens were kept in the field press as per standard procedure recorded in books of Field Techniques and Herbarium Methods (Jain and Rao, 1978). For comparison of ethnomedicinal uses, Dictionary of Indian Folk Medicine and Ethnobotany (Jain, 1991b) and Useful plants of India (Ambasta 2006) have been used. Uses of plants not mentioned in these books are treated as less-known.

 

DISCUSSION:

Medicinal Uses:

The tribes attribute most of ills of life to spirits and often seek the aid of magical practices to get rid of such ills (Griffith, 1946). Besides the spirits, there are other agents, like some animals, birds and even humans that can cast an 'evil-eye' on people, animals or crops and bring about unhappiness, illness, destruction and death.

But over the years, due to experience and tradition, they have learned that many of these evils can be corrected and illnesses can be cured by careful use of plants, magic and propitiatory sacrifices. Many of the ordinary illnesses, though basically believed to be due to spirits, are curable by herbal remedies. (Table-1)

 

In all about 347 medical prescriptions are assigned out of 202 plants used for human health care. Since the list of plants used for treatment of diseases is long, for our purpose, 50 most important ones are identified for this analysis. The table shows the names of plants, local name, number of prescriptions assigned to it in this study. (Table-2)

 


Table 1: Showing Group wise ethnomedicinally important prominent families

Group

Families

Species

Major families with no. of plants

Monocot

8

37

Liliaceae (7), Zingiberaceae (6)

Dicot

56

165

Fabaceae (15),

Euphorbiaceae (10),

Solanaceae (8),

Caesalpiniaceae (6),

Acantheceae (5), Asteraceae (5),

Combretaceae (4).

Angiosperm

64

202

 

 

 

Table 2: Most important medicinal plants used by tribes of the region -

Name of Plants

Local Name

No.of prescriptions

Asteracantha longifolia

Tal makhana

7

Celastrus paniculatus

Mal kangani

7

Emblica officinalis

Aamla

6

Achyranthes aspera

Chirchiri

6

Aegle marmelos

Bel

6

Argemone mexicana

Ghamoya

6

Azadirachta indica

Neem

6

Asparagus racemosus

Satawar

6

Boerhaavia diffusa

Punarnava

5

Chlorophytum tuberosum

Safed musli

5

Gloriosa superba

Kalihari

5

Abrus precatorius

Ratti

5

Acorus calamus

Buch

5

Barleria cristata

Vajradanti

5

Curcuma angustifolia

Tikhur

5

Euphorbia nivulia

Sehurh

5

Helicteres isora

Morodphali

5

Justicia gendarussa

Jagat madana

4

Solanum surratense

Bhatkatiya

4

Sphaeranthus indicus

Gorakhmundi

4

Tinospora cordifolia

Guruch

4

Withania somnifera

Asgandh

4

Curcuma longa

Haldi

4

Cyperus scariosus

Nagarmotha

4

Datura metel

Dhatura

4

Eclipta prostrata

Ghamira

4

Terminalia bellirica

Bahera

4

Terminalia chebula

Harra

4

Tephrosia purpuria

Sarpoka

4

Vitex negundo

Nirgundi

4

Phyllanthus fraternus

Bhui amla

4

Ocimum gratissima

Vantulsi

4

Adhatoda vasica

Arus

4

Euphorbia hirta

Dudhi

4

Boswellia serrata

Salai

4

Semicarpus anacarellium

Bhilma

4

Pueraria tuberosa

Bidarikand

3

Evolvulus alsinoides

Sankhpuspi

3

Cleome viscosa

Hurhur

3

Ocimum sanctum

Tulsi

3

Dendrophthoe falcata

Vandha

3

Curculigo orchioides

Kali musli

3

Calotropis gigantia

Safedmadar

3

Aconitum roundifolium

Bachnag

3

Jatropha curcas

Banrendi

3

Allium sativum

Lahsun

3

Centella asiatica

Brahmi

3

Bauhinia variegata

Kachnar

3

Vetiveria zizaniodes

Khas

3

Zingiber officinale

Adrak

3

 


The plants and or other parts are used to cure different ailments. Consequent upon the study a total of 70 types of ailments (diseases) and the botanical plants have been described. The information about several plants and the methods of use to cure some of the ailments is available, but on certain cases (diseases) hardly one or two plants are used as medicine. On the basis of survey, 21 types of diseases are cured each by single plants, 15 by two plants, 8 by three plants, and other by 4-6 plants; 9 by 7-9 plants and the other 9 by 10-15 plants. Consequent upon the availability of several plants against each disease, the medicinal pressure on single plants for a particular disorder is automatically curtailed as the substitutes are equally effective. (Table-3 and 4)


 

 

 

Table 3: Showing list of diseases and number of plants available against each

No. of plants

used as remedy (each)

Names of diseases against which used

1 Plant

Aphrodisiac, Bronchitis, Chest congestion, Contraceptive, Cooling, Diabetes, Dropsy, Filariasis, Goitre, Heart disease, Hydrocele, Hysteria, Induced fertility, Madness, Pneumonia, Shock, Spleen problems, Tonsilitis, Uraemia, Weakness, Whooping cough=21.

2 Plants

Asthama, Chest pain, Cholera, Gastric trouble, Impotency, Paralysis, Poision, Small pox, Strength, Sun stroke, Toothache, Tuberculosis, Ulcer, Urinary trouble, Vomiting= 15.

3 Plants

Abortion, Child birth, Ear complaints, Jaundice, Lactation, Nasal problems, Spermatorrhoea, Worms = 8.

4-6 Plants

Bite, Blood purification, Body pain, Bone and Joint pain, Headche, Maleria, Rheumatism, Snake bite = 8.

7-9 Plants

Antiseptic, Bone dislocation, Bone fracture, Cut and Wounds, Menstruation problem, Scorpion stings, Stomach trouble, Swelling, Veneral diseases = 9.

10-15 Plants

Burns / Boils / Blisters, Cough and Cold, Digestive trouble, Dysentery and Diarrhoea, Eye disease, Fever, Skin diseases = 9.

Total

70 Ailments

 

Table 4: Certain ailments and ethnomedicinal plants as remedy with their parts used

Ailments

Name of plants

Local Name

Parts used

Aphodisiac

Hygrophila auriculata

Talmakhana

Stem juice

Bronchitis

Aconitum rotundifolium

Bachnag

Root

Chest congestion

Jatropha curcas

Arand

Leaf juice

Contraceptive

Grewia asiatica

Phalsa

Leaf decoction

Cooling

Aegle marmelos

Bel

Fresh fruit juice

Diabetes

Syzygium cuminii

Jamun

Seed powder

Dropsy

Hygrophila auriculata

Talmakhana

Root

Filariasis

Cyperus scariosus

Nagarmotha

Rhizome

Goitre

Begonia picta

Amti

Wp paste

Heart disease

Cassia fistula

Amaltas

Fruit

Hydrocele

Madhuca longifolia

Mahua

Leaf

Hysteria

Sphaeranthus indicus

Gorakhmundi

Paste of Root

Induced fertility

Phyllanthus fraternus

Bhui-amla

Whole plant

Madness

Sphaeranthus indicus

Gorakhmundi

Root paste

Pnemonia

Vernonia anthelmintica

Kalijeer

Inflo. paste

Spleen problems

Albizia ororatissima

Kalisiris

Bark and leaves

Tonslitis

Ocimum gratissimum

Vantulsi

Leaf juice

Uremia

Asparagus racemosus

Satawar

Root decoction

Weakness

Curcuma angustifolia

Tikhur

Plant extract

Shock

Dendropthoe falcata

Bandha

Whole plant

Whooping cough

Barleria cristata

Vajradanti

Plant extract

Asthama

Adhatoda vasica

Gloriosa superb

Arus

Kalihari

Leaf and Flower

Leaf paste

Chest pain

Pueraria tuberosa

Evolvulus alsinoides

Bidarikand

Shankhpuspi

Tuber

Leaf paste

Cholera

Cajanus cajan

Cyperus scariosus

Arhar

Nagarmotha

Leaf decoction

Root extract

Gastric trouble

Dalbergia emerginata

Helicteres isora

Shisham

Marodphali

Root decoction

Fruit

Impotency

Semecarpus anacardium

Terminalia arjuna

Bhilma

Bahera

Root decoction

Bk decoction

Paralysis

Abrus precatorius

Euphorbia hirta

Ratti

Dudhi

Seed

Root paste

Poision

Calotropis procera

Lantana camara

Madar

Bansahru

Root

Seed paste

Small pox

Boswellia serrata

Gloriosa superba

Salai

Kalihari

Resin

Root paste

Strength

Asparagus racemosus

Tephrosia purpurea

Satawar

Sarpoka

Root

Leaf

Sun stroke

Begonia picta

Curcuma angustifolia

Amti

Tikhur

Leaf powder

Root powder

Toothache

Achyranthus aspera

Boswellia serrata

Chirchiri

Salai

Twig, leaf

Bark

Tuberculosis

Barleria cristata

Celastrus paniculatus

Vajradanti

Malkangni

Plant extract

Oil

Ulcer

Bauhinia variegata

Moringa oleifera

Kachnar

Munga

Bark decoction

Leaf

Urinary trouble

Boerhaavia diffusa

Locculus hirsutus

Punarnava

Cheretta

Bark decoction

Leaf

Vomiting

Allium cepa

Terminalia bellirica

Piaz

Bahera

Bulb

Leaf

Abortion

Abrus precatorius

Boerhaavia diffusa

Dendrocalamus strictus

Ratti

Punarnawa

Bans

Seed

Root paste

Young shoot

Child birth

Achyranthes aspera

Ocimum sanctum

Sterculia urens

Chirchiri

Tulsi

Kulu

Root

Branch

Root powder

Ear complaints

Allium sativum

Cleome viscosa

Tagestes erecta

Lahsun

Hurhur

Genda

Bulb decoction

Leaf decoction

Leaf decoction

Jundice

Hygrophila auriculata

Phyllantus fraternus

Tridax procumbens

Talmakhana

Bhui amla

Phulni

Leaf

Whole plant

Whole plant

Lactation

Asparagus racemosus

Dendrophthoe falcata

Eupherbia hirta

Satawar

Vandha

Dudhia

Root decoction

Leave

Whole plant

Nasal problem

Allium cepa

Chlorophytum tuberosum

Tinospora cordifolia

Piyaz

Safed musli

Guruch

Bulb

Tuber paste

Stem extract

Spermatorohoea

Gardenia turgida

Smilax ovalifolia

Sida cordifolia

Dikamali

Ramdatoon

Pharendibuti

Root

Root

Root bark

Worms

Azadiracta indica

Butea monosperma

Curcuma longa

Neem

Chhola

Haldi

Leaf

Seed

Rhizone

 

 


On the contrary where hardly one or two plants are used to cure a particular disease and its substitute antidote is unknown to the local people, the pressure is bound to prevail on such plants. Following as a natural effect, due to excessive medicinal pressure on certain plant species, such plants are becoming hardly available or extinct and thus their plantation and conservation has become of utmost importance.

Less Known Uses:

Various uses reported by tribes were compared with those mentioned from other parts of India and elsewhere, as reported in ethnobotanic literature. Total 76 uses reported by the tribes do not seen to be recorded in the literature.

 

CONCLUSION:

The data and analysis presented so far led to the following conclusions:

         The tribal plant-use is essentially subsistence-oriented and it needs modern and scientific approach for sustainable development.

         The tribals have inherited a certain sense of conservation, but the demand and exploitation of plant resources is inversely proportional to the conservation and regeneration efforts.

         For the economic-uplift and improvement in quality of life, an organised plant-use strategy is to be developed. If their resources are pooled together and harnessed properly, the tribes can come up in life, preserving their culture, traditions and also natural resources.

 

REFERENCE:

1.        Ambasta S.P. (2006) The Useful Plants of India : NISCAIR, CSIR, New Delhi (Vth Reprint)

2.        Dubey P.C., Mishra S.N., Tiwari Arjun (2007) Loss of Biodiversity with reference to important medicinal plants in Vindhyan region and their threat assessment. Jour. of Tropical Forestry Vol. 23 No. I and II P. 108-127.

3.        Dwivedi S.N., Pandey A., 1992 : Ethnobotanical studies on wild and indigenous species of Vindhyan Plateau I Herbaceous flora. J. Econ. Tax. Bot. Add. Ser. (10) 143-150.

4.        Griffiths W.G., 1946 : The Kol tribe of Central India. The Royal society of Bengal, Calcutta.

5.        Jain S.K., 1991(b) : Dictionary of Indian folk medicine and Ethnobotany. Deep Publication, New Delhi 1-311.

6.        Jain, S.K. and Rao R.P., 1978 : A Hand book of field and Herbarium Methods. Today and Tomorrow's Printers and Publishers, Dehradun.

7.        Lal B. and Dubey V.P., 1992 : A survey of plant ethnomedicine of Amarkantak plateau in Central India. Agri. Biol. Res., 8 (1) 29-37.

8.        Mishra Skand(2007):Ethnobotanical aspects of medicinal plants of Baghelkhand Region of Madhya Pradesh. Proc. of Nat. Seminar on Conservation of Biological Resources and Sustainable Development,pp.28-30.

9.        Mishra S.K. and Tiwari Usha (2010):Medicinal Plants of Baghelkhand- Uses and Conservation.Proc. of Nat.Conf.on Biodiversity Resources Management andSustainable Development,pp.148-156.

10.     Mishra S.K., Tiwari U., Dubey S. and Chatterjee D., 1993 : Forests of Central India with special reference to plant of ethnobotanical aspects. Aranya (Proc. of Nat. Semi. on Central Indian Forests, Rewa) Article XX, P. 157-162.

11.     Sikarwar R.L.S. and Maheshwari J.K.; 1992 : Some unrecorded ethnomedicinal plants from Amarkantak Plateau of Madhya Pradesh. Bull. Res. and Deve. Insti., Bhopal, 20 (1and2) 19-22.

12.     Upadhyay R. and Singh H., 1998 : Ethnobotanically important weed flora of Sidhi (M.P.). Proceeding of Nat. Conf. on Ethnobiology at Govt. New Science College, Rewa (M.P.)

13.     Verma P. and Khan A.A., 1993 : Habitat economy and society of the tribal of Amarkantak, district Shahdol (M.P.) India. Tropical Forestry Vol. 9 (iii) 280-282.

14.     Verma P., Khan A.A. and Singh K.K. 1995: Traditional phytotherapy among the Biaga tribe of Shahdol district of Madhya Pradesh, India. Ethnobotany, 7 (1,2) 69-74.

 

 

 

Received on 22.05.2015 Accepted on 23.06.2015

Asian Pharma Press All Right Reserved

Asian J. Res. Pharm. Sci. 5(2): April-June 2015; Page 86-90

DOI: 10.5958/2231-5659.2015.00015.6