Jorhat: Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Sunday said investment to the tune of around Rs 200 crore will be made in the CSIR-North East Institute of Science and Technology (NEIST) to build capacity for the medicinal plant sector of the region.

The amount is aimed at creating infrastructure that will boost medicinal plant storage for commercial purpose, strengthen research and development of local herbs and plants for medicinal purpose, as well as provide a platform for traditional healers to further their treatment to a wider section of the society, an official release said.

Sonowal, the Union Minister of Ayush, made the announcement at CSIR-NEIST.

The NEIST at Jorhat, formerly known as Regional Research Laboratory, is a constituent establishment of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

“The rich bounty of nature of North East must be used responsibly so that the ecology of the region is sustained, while the medicinal benefits from the herbs can be extracted responsibly to ramp up India’s rich heritage in traditional medicine,” Sonowal said.

“We are revitalising the traditional medicine with a rational approach to scientifically validate its outcome so that more and more people can avail its life-enriching benefit. As India leads the resurgence of traditional medicine globally, the North East will play a crucial role to act as harbinger of growth for the healing industry of India,” he said.

During the visit, the minister reviewed the progress of different activities undertaken by the institute to strengthen the potential of medicinal plant market in the region, the release added.