Siddha Tamil Kazharchikkaai

Action ► Seed—antiperiodic, antirheumatic. Roasted and used as an antidiabetic preparation. Leaf, bark and seed—febrifuge. Leaf and bark—emmenagogue, anthelmintic. Root—diuretic, anticalculous.

The seeds contain an alkaloid cae-salpinine; bitter principles such as bon-ducin; saponins; fixed oil.

The seed powder, dissolved in water, showed hypoglycaemic activity in alloxanized hyperglycaemic rabbits. Aqueous extract of the seeds produced similar effects in rats. The powder forms a household remedy for treatment of diabetes in Nicobar Islands. In Kangra, Himachal Pradesh, roots are used in intermittent fevers and diabetes.

In homoeopathy, the plant is considered an excellent remedy for chronic fever.

(Three plant species—Pongamia pinnata Pierre, Holoptelea integrifo-lia (Roxb.) Planch. and Caesalpinia bonduc (L.) Roxb. are being used as varieties of Karanja (because flowers impart colour to water). P. pinnata is a tree and is equated with Karanja, Naktamaala and Udakirya; H. integri-folia, also a tree, with Chirabilva, Puti-ka (bad smell) and Prakiryaa; and C. bonduc, a shrub, with Kantaki Karanja or Lataa Karanja.)

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