Why is NMC replacing “Hippocratic Oath” with “Charak Shapath”?

Why National Medical Commision (NMC) replacing "Hippocratic Oath" with "Charak Shapath"?
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‘Charak Shapath’ may replace Hippocratic Oath in medical colleges in India. @NMC_IND has communicated the same to medical colleges in a meeting held on Feb 7.

Thus, when the first year MBBS students participate in the White Coat ceremony on February 14 to mark the beginning day on their path into becoming physicians, they’ll be reciting Maharshi Charak Shapath that has been pitched by RSS Medical wing – NMO in 2017 and in contrast to an oath known as the Hippocratic Oath that has been used for many years in India

Minutes of Meeting of NMC Discussion with Medical colleges regarding replacing “Hippocratic Oath” with “Charak Shapath”

Here are the minutes of the meeting of NMC discussion with medical colleges regarding the replacement of the oath:

Charak Shapath

Who was Charaka and What is Charaka Samhita?

Charaka was among the primary people who contributed to the Ayurveda system (the system of healing and lifestyle that was developed within Ancient India). Charaka is credited as the writer of the medical treatise Charaka Samhita, one of the primary texts of the ancient Indian medicine as well as Ayurveda which is included in Brhat-Trayi.

The Charaka Samhita (“Compendium of Charaka”) is a Sanskrit text that focuses on Ayurveda (Indian conventional medicine). Alongside that of the Sushruta Samhita, it is one of two fundamental Ayurvedic texts that has survived from the time of ancient India.

Hippocratic Oath vs Charak Shapath

What is Charak Shapath?

Here is the English translation of the original version of Charaka shapath :

Charak Shapath
Charak Shapath English

What is Hippocratic Oath?

The Hippocratic Oath is an Oath to ethics typically practiced by modern medicine doctors all over the world. Originally written in Greek, it is among the most popular in the field of Greek health texts. In its initial form, it calls for the new doctor to swear by several healers that they will adhere to specific ethical guidelines. The oath is the oldest definition of medical ethics in the Western world, setting out a variety of guidelines for medical ethics that remain vital to the present. This includes the concepts of confidentiality of medical records and non-maleficence.

Here is the English version of Hippocratic oath:

I swear by Apollo Healer, by Asclepius, by Hygieia, by Panacea, and by all the gods and goddesses, making them my witnesses, that I will carry out, according to my ability and judgment, this oath and this indenture.

To hold my teacher in this art equal to my own parents; to make him partner in my livelihood; when he is in need of money to share mine with him; to consider his family as my own brothers, and to teach them this art, if they want to learn it, without fee or indenture; to impart precept, oral instruction, and all other instruction to my own sons, the sons of my teacher, and to indentured pupils who have taken the Healer’s oath, but to nobody else.

I will use those dietary regimens which will benefit my patients according to my greatest ability and judgment, and I will do no harm or injustice to them.[7] Neither will I administer a poison to anybody when asked to do so, nor will I suggest such a course. Similarly I will not give to a woman a pessary to cause abortion. But I will keep pure and holy both my life and my art. I will not use the knife, not even, verily, on sufferers from stone, but I will give place to such as are craftsmen therein.

Into whatsoever houses I enter, I will enter to help the sick, and I will abstain from all intentional wrong-doing and harm, especially from abusing the bodies of man or woman, bond or free. And whatsoever I shall see or hear in the course of my profession, as well as outside my profession in my intercourse with men, if it be what should not be published abroad, I will never divulge, holding such things to be holy secrets.

Now if I carry out this oath, and break it not, may I gain for ever reputation among all men for my life and for my art; but if I break it and forswear myself, may the opposite befall me.

TTranslation by W.H.S. Jones

What is the criticism about this proposed change from Hippocratic oath to Charak Shapath?

  • Charaka was father of Ayurveda and if Charaka’s oath will be used for Modern Medicine doctors, then which oath will be used for Ayurveda doctors
  • Isn’t it another systematic step in blurring the lines between Modern Medicine and Ayurveda by the current government?
  • Changing from Hippocratic Oath to Charak Shapath seems to be so much important to the National Medical Commision rather than dealing with ethics violations, unpaid salary of faculty in private medical colleges, MBBS interns’ stipend issue, substandard medical colleges
  • Why can Charaka Shapath supplement rather than replace the Hippocratic Oath taken by doctors around the world?

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Why is NMC replacing “Hippocratic Oath” with “Charak Shapath”?

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