Tuesday, June 22, 2021
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Superstition is prevalent in modern India

Do we still live in a world where we believe in “demonic possession”. Well the answer is yes and no. It becomes no for everyone with an iota of brain and yes for people who are too superstitious. While world is still moving ahead at a rapid pace we continue to remain stuck in a quasi superstitious society. An incident which unfolded right in front of the place where I lived baffled me for a long time. A girl living in my vicinity was having some mental problems. Family members instead of consulting doctors took her to various parts of the country to help her to get rid of “demonic possession.” Well personally, I don’t believe in demonic possession and there is scientific facts supporting such claims but in this case I do believe it was true.

I consider myself as a very liberal person. So I don’t mind what sort of belief or superstition you follow but it should not cause harm to anyone. For example, you consider black cat as a symbol of bad luck and you will wait before crossing the road. I don’t mind. But if you consider a mental problem to be a demonic possession and some baba possessing supernatural powers can cure it then I definitely won’t support it and it’s illegal as per law. Babas possessing supernatural powers are sometimes deranged as many cases have which have been proved in the past. In 2006, a boy was kidnapped, mutilated and killed by a woman and her two sons to cure her nightmares and visions in a village in Uttar Pradesh. She had taken this drastic step by following the instructions of tantric or witch-doctors.

In 2009, a childless couple were advised by a tantric to sacrifice eleven children, which would allow them to conceive in a village near Vidarbha in Maharashtra state. The couple managed to kill five children, by poisoning before they were discovered and arrested between December 2009 and March 2010. The sixth child survived the poisoning. In Nalasopara near Mumbai two kids were killed by their own parents and grandparents because they believed the kids were possessed by a demon. These cases are not even tip of the iceberg. These cases have become shockingly common.

How should I end this diary? Should I say that since India is growing at a faster pace and such practices will cease to exist as literacy increases? Literacy and higher standard of living did not stop North West India from having one of the worst male to female sex ratios across the country due to female infanticide. Should I steal famous dialogue from the Bollywood blockbuster “All lzz Well” ? Or should I end this diary with a very famous quotation “Darkest hour is just before the dawn.” Maybe.

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