Truth as Blasphemy
As mentioned in the quickies a few weeks ago, Sanal Edamaruku, president of the Indian Rationalist Association, revealed that a “weeping” cross was not actually a miracle at all, but in fact caused by a leaky drain. When he refused to retract his findings, the local Catholic Church filed a case against him for blasphemy and he now has arrest warrants out for him.
Some background: In March, Edamaruku was contacted by an Indian TV channel and asked to investigate a miracle in Mumbai. Edamaruku is no stranger to investigation. You may remember this story from a few years ago when he challenged a guru to kill him on live TV.
Edamaruku was being asked to investigate a crucifix in front of the Church of Our Lady of Velankanni. The crucifix had water dripping from the feet of the statue for several days. This water was being given to people to drink and claims of its healing powers had already begun to fly. When Edamaruku investigated, he quickly identified the the source of the water as a drain from a nearby washroom and explained the capillary action that caused the water to reach Jesus’ feet.
In presenting his findings on live TV, he also accused the priests of the church of ‘miracle mongering’ for publicity. The local church leaders quickly filed First Information Reports (FIR) against Edamaruku, accusing him of blasphemy, which is illegal under section 295A of the Indian Penal Code.
Salim Fadhley from the Pod Delusion spoke with Edamaruku about the situation – it’s a great interview:
Although he has not been arrested yet, the Indian Rationalists fear it could happen at any time:
Sanal can be arrested any moment. In every single place where a petition is filed against him. He could be forced to appear in person to answer them. If his answer is not found satisfactory, he could be arrested. He could be forced to fight a multitude of criminal cases in different places. This is not only immensely time and money consuming. Given the fanaticism of some Catholic believers, it can be a danger for his life.
If you are interested in helping out with Edamaruku’s Defense Fund, you can donate here.