The poet-President & the “creator of the universe”
India’s President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam has been the chief guest during the glamorous birthday show of controversial godman Sai Baba on 23rd November 2006. It is shameful and outrageous that the Indian President pays respect to a saffron charlatan, who exploits the gullible by claiming that he can produce "holy ash" from thin air, cure all illnesses, has created the universe and other nonsense more. It aggravates the case against President Kalam that he did not content himself with performing a kind of public relations routine, but went out of his way praising and glorifying the charlatan.
“I have immense love for Sai Baba”, Dr. Kalam said in his speech at Sai Baba’s headquarters in Puttaparthi. “I penned a poem in my mother tongue to greet Sai Baba on his birthday.” And he was not ashamed to read his poem (in a Telugu translation of the Tamil original) publicly to the cheering crowd of Sai Baba devotees. The rather embarrassing piece glorified Sai Baba as a glittering lighthouse and symbol of goodness. Because of Sai Baba’s presence, the President of India rejoiced, the earth was the most blessed planet in the solar system.
This is not only extremely silly and in bad taste. It is moreover irresponsible and undignified to a degree that is not compatible with the august office of the Indian President. President Kalam has misrepresented India and betrayed the trust of her people. India deserves a (more) dignified and responsible President.
President, Indian Rationalist Association and
India’s President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam & Satya Sai Baba
The scientist-President & the exposed miracle man
It is deplorable that there are still many poor people in India, who are deprived of basic education and who don’t have any opportunity to develop scientific literacy. They are easy prey for frauds, fanning their fears and raising their hopes with “miracles” and promises of magical solutions for all problems. Miracle mongers and faith healers are inflicting a dangerous disease upon the weakest section of Indian society and have to be stopped by all means. It has to be one of the primary tasks of human development in India, to help the victims of superstition and blind belief to break the shackles of their archaic mindset and join the twenty first century.
Besides being the Indian President, Dr. Abdul Kalam is seen as one among the most prominent scientists of India and has raised great hopes for a better future, guided and protected by science. His concept “Vision 2020” promises to lead India smoothly into the orbit of the developed world. If a man of this stature and position uses his influence to come to the rescue a scandal-tainted godman, he commits a serious and unpardonable betrayal.