Lok Satta

Tuesday, 06 January 2015 12:50

Loksatta Party criticizes ‘pseudo-science’ at Indian Science Congress

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Mumbai, January 6: The Loksatta Party has strongly criticized the annual Indian Science Congress for its attempt to pass off obscurantist, unsupported claims as scientific fact.

Maharashtra LSP general secretary Rajeev D Pai said it was laughable that the congress, hosted this year by Mumbai University, invited the retired principal of a pilot-training academy, a man with no known background in scientific research, to present a paper on ancient aviation, which was nothing but his interpretation of religious hymns.

Backing NASA scientist Ram Prasad Gandhiraman stand against such ‘pseudo-science’, Pai wondered if the next congress would invite the owner of one of Mumbai’s many driving schools to present a paper on ancient Indian automobile engineering.

Referring to other claims at the congress, such as the one that Indians invented algebra but graciously let the Arabs take credit for it, Pai said if ancient India was indeed so far ahead of the rest, the question its bhakts need to ponder over is where and why India lost out in the race to dominate the world.

“It is not enough to blame the so-called thousand years of slavery under Muslim and British rule,” Pai said. “The question that must be answered is, how was such an ‘advanced’ civilization enslaved in the first place?”

Pai said there was nothing wrong in trying to cultivate a sense of pride in the country’s citizens, but attempting to do so by recalling a mythical past was a surefire way to promote fascism.

If the ruling BJP and its leadership want Indians to take pride in India, they must do things that make people feel proud to be Indian instead of wasting time invoking real and imagined glories from the past, he said.