Ayurvedicl rival for the pill
The first scientifically approved herbal contraceptive pill - based on a 2500-year-old Indian recipe - could be available within three years, according to researchers.
They say the drug, which is about to undergo clinical trials, will provide women with an effective, safe and cheap alternative to existing contraceptive options.
Roy Chaudhury, president of Delhi Medical Council and head of India's herbal contraceptive development taskforce, described early development of the pill as "very promising".
"This would be a great gift from India to the world."
The main ingredients of the herbal contraceptive are two shrubs that grow in the Himalayan foothills - false pepper (Embelia ribes) and long pepper (Piper longum).