'Press sedition charges against Ramdev for misinformation campaign': IMA in letter to PM Modi

By PTI
NEW DELHI: Patanjali Yogpeeth on Thursday confirmed that it has received a defamation notice served by the Indian Medical Association (IMA), demanding an apology from Yoga Guru Ramdev over remarks on allopathy, and said it will give legally a “befitting reply”.

While responding to an e-mail query by PTI, a statement from the Patanjali Yogpeeth quoting General Secretary Acharya Balkrishna confirmed it and said: “We will give them befitting reply legally which way we do all things while serving our great motherland and humanity.”

The Haridwar-based organisation also said that Patanjali carries all the activities with “scientific and truthful temperament” and “cannot allow anyone to disparage, neglect and demean the great knowledge and science of rishis and scriptures”.

On Wednesday, the IMA had served a six-page defamation notice on Ramdev for his alleged disparaging remarks against allopathy and allopathic doctors, demanding an apology from him within 15 days, failing which it said the association will demand a compensation of Rs 1,000 crore from the yoga guru.

The notice served on behalf of IMA (Uttarakhand) secretary Ajay Khanna by his lawyer Neeraj Pandey describes the remarks by Ramdev as damaging to the reputation and the image of allopathy and its practitioners.

The notice has also asked Ramdev to make a video clip contradicting all his allegations and circulate it on social media platforms where he had uploaded his earlier video.

It further asked the yoga guru to withdraw a “misleading” advertisement from all platforms endorsing “Coronil kit”, a product of his firm, as an effective medicine for COVID-19, failing which an FIR and a criminal case will be lodged against him by the IMA.

Besides, the IMA had also written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding that yoga guru be booked immediately under sedition charges for alleged misinformation campaign on vaccination and challenging government protocols for treatment of COVID-19.

On Sunday, Ramdev was forced to withdraw a statement made in a viral video clip in which he is heard questioning some of the medicines being used to treat the coronavirus infection and saying that “lakhs have died from taking allopathic medicines for COVID-19”.

The remarks were met with vociferous protests from the doctors’ association, following which Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan asked him to withdraw the “extremely unfortunate” statement.

A day later, the yoga guru posed 25 questions to the IMA in an “open letter” on his Twitter handle, asking if allopathy offered permanent relief for ailments such as hypertension and type-1 and 2 diabetes.

He went on to list modern day ailments such as Parkinson’s disease and also wondered if allopathy had any painless cure to treat infertility as well as to reverse ageing and increase hemoglobin.