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Prem Shankar Pandey*


Ayurveda is thousands of years old holistic system of Indian medicine. Various minerals and metals preparations are used as medicine in Ayurveda. In the Ayurvedic description several metallic preparations called Bhasma are in clinical use since 8th Century, A.D. Vaikranta (Tourmaline) has been in use under Maharasa group. It is widely used for treatment of a number of diseases. The present study deals with the mineralogical characterization of mineral Vaikranta having medicinal importance in Ayurvedic system of medicine. Vaikranta is used in the form of Bhasma for the treatment of tuberculosis, diabetes, skin diseases, brain tonic, aenemia, asthma, nervous diseases, piles etc. However, raw drug standardization plays a vital role for assuring the therapeutic potential of the final drug, Vaikranta is distributed in hills of Rajasthan, Bihar, Jharkhand and Karnataka. The sample of Vaikranta was collected from local vendor and authenticated by the subject expert and further analysed through physical properties of the mineral. The results showed that Vaikranta is mineral of Iron, Silicon, Aluminium, Magnesium and Sodium and are present in requisite amount. Vaikranta is available in seven colours, but the black Vaikranta(Tournaline) is real therapeutically active mineral. It is observed that it possess definit crystal form, streak, hardness, cleavage, fracture, luster, specific gravity. All these physical properties and study of Electron Probe Micro Analysis (EPMA) of minerals Vaikranta are very well match with the acceptable characteristics of Vaikranta as described in Ayurvedic classics.

Keywords: Vaikranta, Tourmaline, Rasa Shastra, Maharasa, EPMA, Standardisation.

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