Yoga at Sambhavna

A common scene at Gol Ghar (our roundhouse meeting place) every morning here at the Sambhavna Trust Clinic is people sitting comfortably and chatting quietly, relaxing. People wait here, near the medicinal herb garden, to collect their tokens for further consultation with our physicians. This is the daily routine of the clinic.

Tahir Yaar (left) said: “Before Gol Ghar, there were long queue and sometimes we were waiting in a jam packed situation but here at Gol Ghar we can wait in open space, surrounded by greenery, so we feel nice and calm and of course we learn some good things about yoga.

Another thing that has recently changed here is health education about yoga, which is given every day by Dr Shruti (our yoga physician at Sambhavna). Before that people sat in front of the registration room chatting or were silent. But now, Dr Shruti talks with the patients every morning about the effects and benefits of yoga, how you have to sit at a place, how without taking medicines, yoga and prayanam can cure your illness. Just by giving a little bit time each day to your own body you can see how your body responds and runs better.

Dr Shruti told me that when she started here the number of patients taking yoga was relatively few: “I tried a lot to raise interest but nothing seemed to work. Then at a meeting here a suggestion was made and I had decided to go with it and its working well. But some  patients come after a gap, they discontinued in between, some come for two to three days and then stop – it’s gradual but things are improving.

Doctors are also suggesting yoga in some cases like joint pain, the early stage of diabetes (at the starting phase), for backache and more.

Here is some data from 1st August to 13th September 2011.

Category Male Female Total
Gas exposed 37 118 155
Contaminated water exposed 7 14 21
Both 3 3 6
Grand Total 178

Of these 178 patients, 147 patients came directly to yoga and another 31 patients were referred by our physicians.

Munajira (35) (left) said that Dr Shruti talked to her about how we get stop using pharmaceutical medicines. “She told us about how we can control our blood pressure and diabetes. Today is my sixth day of yoga; I am learning from her and after that I’ll do it at home. I prefer yoga to taking medicines. I am feeling better now, before I wasn’t able to go upstairs, my knees were weak and I got tired easily.”

Ram Babu Sahu, who registered at Sambhavna two months before taken treatment from Dr Jai (an Ayurvedic physician) and Dr Qaiser (an allopathic physician). He listened to Dr Shruti just this morning and came directly to the yoga room: “I am having pain in the body for a long time and not having proper relief so I have decided to do yoga and it’s my first day. I hope I will get well soon if I follow yoga teacher’s instructions seriously.”

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We believe Dow must finally accept responsibility for Bhopal. Until then, The Bhopal Medical Appeal funds two award-winning clinics in the city. Both offer free, first-class care to victims of the gas disaster or the ongoing water contamination. The survivors have nowhere else left to turn – please help if you can.