Dr. Narendra Dabholkar


Prabhakar Nanawaty

Suman Oak

Why developing a scientific temper is essential for Indian democracy to flourish

On Friday, after unusually intense rainfall caused Kerala to be inundated by worst floods it had experienced in a century, a tweet by newly appointed Reserve Bank of India board member S Gurumurthy sparked horror. The co-convenor of the Swadeshi Jagran Manch suggested that the disaster may have been a manifestation of the Continue reading

National Scientific Temper Day: Remembering Our ‘Duty’ To Develop A Spirit Of Inquiry

A ping on my phone told me that I had been added to the NSTD Mumbai Whatsapp group. NSTD? National Scientific Temper Day, 20 August, as I soon figured out. Id never heard of it before, so I thought Id do a quick check: 20August isSadhbhavana Divas(connected to Rajiv Gandhi) andAkshay Urja Divas(for Continue reading

Scientific Temper & Political Discourse

Thousands of scientists, academics and students staged a March for Science in August 2017 and April 2018 all over India. Inspired by a global movement, these marches were also a protest against the growing evidence of a lack of respect for science in the political discourse in recent years.

This years Continue reading

The Politics of Indian Pseudoscience and What We Need to Do to Tame It

Should the Indian media pay as much attention as it does to our politicians pseudoscientific claims?The Printhad posed this question to me recently making an apparent reference to the debate between those who say we should simply focus on good science and reinforce its traits and those who believe bad science is an Continue reading

What Makes People Distrust Science? Surprisingly, Not Politics

Today, there is a crisis of trust in science. Many people including politicians and, yes, even presidents publicly express doubts about the validity of scientific findings. Meanwhile, scientific institutions andjournalsexpress their concerns about the publics increasing distrust in science. How is it possible that science, the products of which permeate our everyday lives, Continue reading

What is it like to be a Human?

Imagine an intelligent bat contemplating the mind-body problem, name of Tim Nigel. TimNigel has noticed that humans have an auditory sense not possessed by bats (of his species): they can hear various pitches. This enables them to appreciate music (unlike Tim and his conspecifics) and also to have other types of auditory experience Continue reading

India never had a golden age: Interview with Prof. D.N. Jha, historian

LONG before many historians called the Hindutva forces bluff with respect to Indian history, Professor D.N. Jha had talked about the not-so-divine status of the cow in the Hindu religion. Basing his argument largely on scriptures, he came up withThe Myth of the Holy Cow. Hindutva outfits panned the book but could not Continue reading

Training Course in Exorcism

Vatican City is considered as the most sacred place for Christian religion. The highest authority of Christian religion, Pope resides at Vatican City. Priests from various parts of world are offered training around religious matters at Vatican City. Recently, Vatican City has stirred a controversy by announcing a training course in exorcism. The Continue reading

Democracy or Babacracy

Madhya Pradesh government has recently announced that Computer Baba, Bhayujji Maharaj, Narmada Nand,Hari Haranand Pandit and Yogendra Mahant will lead the initiative of Narmada cleaning in capacity of state ministers. Surprisingly two of these newly appointed state ministers had announced a Narmada Ghotala Yatra against the government. The aim of this Yatra was Continue reading

Industrial Air Pollution Clean-Up Is On Its Way In 2018

Since 1955, theUnited States governmenthas recognized the need for legislation to clean up air pollution. Subsequent revisions to the initial legislation strengthened the laws regarding allowable amounts of car emissions, factory smog, and other sources of air pollution.

The most recent version, The Clean Air Act of 1990, tackled five areas: Continue reading

Science and Pseudoscience

We live in a post-truth, anti-intellectual world where intuition, common sense, and fake news are often preferred to scientific evidence, and where pseudoscience is often presented as valid science. Assuming that truth exists and is worth searching for, and that science is our most reliable tool in that search, how can we identify Continue reading

The Myth of the Indian Aviator

In the distant Mumbai suburb of Andheri, on a busy lane across a large cigarette factory, stationed adjacent to a statue of Jesus Christ and what appears to be a rarely-used post box, is a memorial with an unusual message. It informs the reader in Marathi that an Indian scientist, using the ideas Continue reading