Guwahati: Karma, many a times, has been cited as the reason behind man’s situation. Misfortunes in one’s life are often attributed to their ill or harmful actions in the past.
Science, of course, will have plenty of evidence against such notions and happenstance, but when it comes to diseases, modern day research medicine provides clear proof that Karma has no hand to play in whether or not a person will fall ill.
Health ministers are at the forefront of a government’s efforts and research in the health and medical field and officially hold the countrymen’s health in their hands. When someone has that much power and knowledge at their disposal, you would expect them to be aware of, at the very least, the basics of how diseases work.
When Assam’s health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma claimed that a person’s sins are the reason for developing cancer, his statement quite predictably attracted widespread criticism and ridicule.
The opposition accused him of trying to cover up his failure in the health sector with “karmic views.”
In an attempt to subtly throw shade at some state government school teachers known for bunking classes, he said that it was a sin to avoid one’s duty. Going a step further, he said that no one could escape God’s punishment if a family member were to do some injustice. “Some people die from cancer, some die in accidents. This is all because of sins”, he was stated as saying, according to a group of newly appointed school teachers he was addressing.
PTI reported Congress leader P Chidambaram as saying, “That is what switching parties does to a person”, an obvious slight referring to Sarma’s switch from the Congress to the BJP before last year’s assembly elections.
Perhaps making matters worse, Sarma went on to defend his ill-conceived statement and said that as a Hindu, he believed in karma and adhered to his beliefs. “My father must have committed a sin too, because he died of cancer”, said Sarma over WhatsApp.