The National Medical Commission (NMC) has modified its official logo, replacing the word “India’ with “Bharat” and adding a colour image of the god of Ayurveda, Dhanwantari.
The move has sparked a controversy with critics saying the country’s top medical regulator had abandoned the Lion Capital.
Various medical practitioners, among them the Indian Medical Association, have expressed unhappiness over the National Medical Commission’s new logo featuring a Hindu deity.
Reportedly, the Indian Medical Association's Kerala chapter has criticized the logo change, stating that it is not acceptable to the modern medical fraternity. According to them the new logo sends the wrong message and goes against the scientific and secular nature of the commission. The association has called for the change to be reversed.
As per NMC officials, the Dhanvantri (Hindu deity) logo has been in use for almost a year. Previously, it was in black and white and not easily visible in printouts. The new logo simply features a colored photo in the center.
Who is Dhanwantari?
Dhanwantari is considered a mythical deity born with ambrosia in one hand and Ayurveda on the other at the end of the churning of milk ocean. He reincarnated himself in the Chandra dynasty. He was born to King Dhanwa, learnt Ayurveda from Bharadwaja.
Meanwhile, people have also argued that even the World Health Organization’s (WHO) emblem consisted of the United Nations' symbol overlain by a staff with a snake coiling around it. The staff and snake have long been a symbol of medicine and the medical profession. WHO says it originates from the story of Asclepius, who was revered by the ancient Greeks as a god of healing and whose cult involved the use of snakes.