ANDHASHRADDHA NIRMULAN SAMITHI, MAHARASHTRA

Report of their 1989-90 Work:

Andhashraddha Nirmulan Samiti, for short ANS, was formed in 1980. The object of ANS was to work for eradication of superstitions and blind beliefs that stops the progress of the people and our country, by inculcating Scientific temper and for a rational approach in life.

The main objects are:

  1. To analyse superstition scientifically;
  2. To find out socio-psychological reasons for superstitions;
  3. To develop scientific temper amongst the people; and
  4. To educate and organize people against their social exploitation through superstitions.

YOUTH CAMPS:

ANS regularly conducts Youth Camps of one to 3 days duration. In these camps, our resource persons demonstrate and explain some tricks of the godmen like producing holy ash from air, walking on fire, insertion of trishul through tongue, eating fire, catching ghosts, moving of pattas, producing fire by mental power etc., and the scientific basis behind them.

Lectures are given on blind belief, mystic power, ghost and poltergeist phenomena, study of religions, psychiatric problems, evolution theory, astrology, self-hypnosis, para-psychology, possession of gods and goddesses, rational thinking, snakes and blind beliefs, humanism etc. We also train the youths to expose the godmen. We develop public consciousness amongst the participants. ANS have arranged youth camps in various places in Maharashtra State.

EXPOSURES:

1. Curing diseases through prayer. Large advertisements in local dailies announcing that a Miracle Mela would be held at Kasturchand Park, Nagpur by Rev.Miko Huggins, Rev.Roger Jude and Sister Judy Such of U.S.A., along with Rev. Martin Bullhman of Switzerland, claiming that all diseases and physical disabilities, could be cured through prayers. ANS strongly objected to such advertisements and complained to the Police. Also organised a rally with physically handicapped people and challenged them to cure them. They could not and so were finally arrested by Police under Drugs and Magical Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act, 1954 and violation of Medical Practitioners Act 1961 (Maharashtra).

2. Shaikh Farid Baba: He claimed to cure diseases like cancer, blood pressure, diabetes, filariasis, etc., by applying ash. He also claimed to know all languages and to possess telepathic powers thereby misleading and misguiding the gullible people. ANS challenged his claims and proved them to be false. The police arrested him under the above acts.

3. Pandit Hari Dayal Kalicharan Misra: He claimed to be a renowned astrologer. He claimed to cure people of incurable diseases by suction, by keeping a coin on the navel and used to collect Rs.10,000 to 20,000/- as charges. ANS got him arrested under IPC 420.

4. Dr. D.P. Pande Maharaj: Claiming himself to be an avatar of Vishnu, on thursdays he used to collect patients for a cure by acting as if he was possessed by god. ANS held a strong demonstration against him and also a hunger strike when police did not take any action. Later he was arrested by police under IPC 143, 323, 506, 34 and under Drugs and Magical Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act, 1954.

5. Oundekar Maharaj of Nanded: Through Jadu Tona (sorcery), mantra and tantra he cheated people by claiming to cure diseases of all kinds. The ANS again succeeded in getting him arrested by the Police.

6. Lalu Shankar Ustad of Barshi: He claimed to be possessed by Goddess Kali and exploited people, threatening them of dire consequences. ANS exposed him and removed the fears of the people.

7. Sachidananda Baba of Nanded: ANS exposed the claims of this Baba and also Kishore Shastri of Nasik and ultimately got them arrested by Police.

8. Gulab Baba: claiming to have divine powers to create anything from nothing and to drive a jeep without fuel, ANS challenged him to prove his claims under fraud proof conditions. He could not accept the challenge and ran away. ANS organised a big campaign against this Baba which was attended by thousands of people. Prabhu Das Shene: A sorcerer to have mantrik powers, ANS took him to the police station and got him arrested.

ROLE OF SAVIOURS FROM PEOPLES BELIEF IN SORCERY:

ANS while exposing self proclaimed Babas, at the same time protected the innocent people from public wrath. The ignorant people man-handled innocent ones believing them to be sorcerers practising black magic. ANS intervened in such cases and explained to the public that they were innocent and saved them from the public wrath. Cases of Shanta Bai Gote, Madhule Koradi, and Janabai Choudhury, Nagpur ARE SOME PROOFS.

VIJNAN YATRAS:

On the occasion of Jyothibha Phule death and Ambedkar Birth Centenary Celebration, ANS organised Vijnan Yatras at various places all over Maharashtra and Goa. They gave lectures and demonstrations of the miracles. In every programme thousands of the people attended.

HYPNOTISM:

Public shows are conducted to explain about illusions, delusions, ghost possession, fears etc. The hypnotist makes the hypnotised persons to go into such phenomena.

MISCELLANEOUS:

ANS arranged poster exhibitions, essay competitions, symposiums, street dramas, medical camps, psychiatric camps, scientific rallies, survey programmes of superstitions and blind beliefs. Also publication of books and periodicals, Jati Nirmulan, Devadasi system eradication, anti sati programmes, eye donation, body donation, and blood donation campaign, humanism, and protection of trees and wildlife etc.

PERIODICALS: A monthly magazine titled "Bhram Niras" Andha Shraddha Nirmulan Patrika in Marathi is being published for the last three years with a circulation of 3000 copies. Two books have been published titled 1) Buwavoli Bali Striyancha, 2) Sheth Mhanamaticha"; also various leaflets on blind beliefs and superstitions.

IMPACT ON SOCIETY:

When news papers publish about our exposures of fake godmen and Babas, people become aware of our role in society and we get their sympathy and backing. Because of fear of ANS, the highly influential Babas like Pilot Baba, Lucky stone specialist Patwardhan, Shakuntala Devi, Nirmala Devi Shrivastava etc., are afraid to visit Mahrashtra and Nagpur City again which itself is a great achievement of our organisation. ANS has a standing challenge of Rs.one lakh to those who can prove miracles, ordinary psychic powers under fraud proof conditions. So far no one have accepted the challenge to refute our claim that there is no such power.


The University of Regensburg neither approves nor disapproves of the opinions expressed here. They are solely the responsibility of the person named below.

Gerald_Huber@r.maus.de

Last update: 22 July 1998