Mahir Haneef TNN
Kochi: Practitioners of electropathy or electro-homeopathy shouldn’t use the title doctor along with their names, the Kerala high court has ruled.
More than 150 colleges across the country are offering courses in electropathy, with the most widely pursued one being Bachelor of Electropathy Medicine and Surgery (BEMS), which has a course duration of four and a half years.
When the issue of recognition of electro-homeopathy came up before various high courts, the contention put forward by societies of its practitioners was that no law has banned their practise and they are entitled to engage in a profession as guaranteed by the Constitution.
The Supreme Court on July 24 had issued a stay on a recent order by the Allahabad high court describing electro-homeopathy as an unrecognized system of medicine.
Dismissing a petition by the Indian Electro Homeopathy Medical Council, the Allahabad high court had held in February that electro-homeopathy is not a recognized system of medicine and cannot be prescribed for curing diseases or for any other purpose.
The Kerala high court’s order banning the use of the doctor title by electropathy practitioners was while considering a petition by Firshad K A of Puliparambu in Malappuram seeking protection from harassment by police.
Firshad had stated in his petition that he holds a diploma in electropathy issued by New Delhi-based Naturo Electro Homoeopathic Medicos (NEHM) and is practising electropathy, which is classified as an alternative medicine.
He complained of harassment by the circle inspector of Nallalam police station in Kozhikode.
Considering Firshad’s petition, the division bench comprising of Justice K M Joseph and Justice K Harilal ordered that Firshad shouldn’t use designations like doctor along with his name and should not practise modern medicine, homeopathy or any other systems of medicine.
While the petitioner would be free to practise electropathy, his practice should be subject to laws such as Kerala Abkari Act and Drugs and Cosmetic Act, the court clarified. The high court also asked the police not to interfere in the practise unless the petitioner violates any statutory provisions.