Creationism in India

We rarely write about what’s going on outside of the West, because other ways of thinking are unfamiliar to us, and our own creationists provide enough entertainment. But things are quiet today, so we’ll mention something that’s getting a lot of headlines.

This appears in The Statesman, published in Kolkata, formerly known as Calcutta, the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. The newspaper has a comments feature. Their headline is MoS HR Satyapal Singh calls Darwin’s theory ‘scientifically wrong’. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development [that’s the “MoS HR” from the headline] Satyapal Singh claimed on Friday, 19 January, that Charles Darwin’s Theory of Evolution should be removed from school and college curriculum. The reason? According to Singh, Darwin’s theory is “scientifically wrong”.

We can hear the cheers in Seattle (Discoveroid headquarters) and Kentucky (where ol’ Hambo is located). Here’s more:

Speaking to reporters in Aurangabad, the minister said that humans arrived on earth as humans, and did not evolve from apes as Darwin claimed. “Darwin’s theory (of evolution of humans) is scientifically wrong. It needs to change in school and college curriculum. Since the man is seen on Earth he has always been a man,” he said while speaking to reporters on Friday in Aurangabad.

This is great stuff. Let’s read on:

The BJP MP [whatever that is] from Baghpat in Haryana was appointed MoS HRD on 3 September 2017 following a Cabinet reshuffle. Before joining politics, Singh served as the Mumbai police commissioner.

Ah, he’s a policeman. One more excerpt:

Singh claimed that ancient Indian texts do not mention anything about apes turning into humans. “No books we have read or the tales told to us by our grandparents had such a mention,” the minister added.

It’s unlikely that we’ll ever post any follow-up to this because we never look for news in Asia, but it’s interesting to see that Darwin has detractors elsewhere.

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11 responses to “Creationism in India

  1. Richard Jones

    BJP is the political party, whatever it is and MP is Member of Parliament.

  2. Charles Deetz ;)

    So the first human should have written it down that they were such, and left it in a convenient spot for us to find years later?

  3. Pete Moulton

    Yes, Darwin has detractors elsewhere, but they’re apparently no less ignorant than our own homegrown kind.

  4. It seems to be that the emphasis is on the relationship of humans to the rest of of life. Just like immediate popular reaction in England to the “Origins”. Not some technical objections to the reasoning.

  5. It appears that Hindus are also capable of cherry-picking scripture. The divine monkey Vrisakapi is mentioned in Rigveda, making at least an inferential case for humans relating to other primates. Perhaps texts about human origins were expurgated, as the Gospel of Mary of Magdala and the Gospel of Judas Iscariot were removed from Xian scripture

  6. Seems reasonable?

    Instead of “my granddaddy wasn’t no dirty ape”, it’s

    “My granddaddy never told me about screwing no damned dirty ape”!

  7. Good to know that being brain dead is not just an American affliction.

  8. There is a petition about this that people here might like to sign, and more background, on Jerry Coyne’s blog at https://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2018/01/21/creationism-rears-its-head-in-india/

  9. PB, why do you link to a borderline islamophobe and apologist of racists (despite not being one himself, except for his enduring tendency to hold all muslims responsible for the crimes of a minority) instead of the original?

    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScxGQJMz-zswINv5WgHyD9L_9EcE6O8TDjq-JswM4m6axbOTw/viewform

    Really, you almost made me refusing to sign.

  10. But the Minister seems so learned. I am certain that he studied independently while running the Mumbai police dept. Hmmmm, maybe not.