Sanal Edamaruku is nicknamed “the Indian James Randi” for a good reason: He debunks ridiculous claims with perfectly reasonable explanations.
More than a year ago, Edamaruku was charged with “hurting the religious sentiments of a particular community” after he explained how a statue of Christ could be dripping water seemingly on its own (spoiler: It involves science). The “crime” was punishable with up to three years in prison in addition to a fine.
So, since that time, Edamaruku has been on the run. Lhendup G. Bhutia at Open magazine has the unbelievable story of what he’s had to go through:
… Edamaruku went into hiding.
He spent the next month and a half living in student hostels and various friends’ homes. He stopped driving his car. While he was hiding in a post-graduate hostel, he would live in a room with the door latched from outside. When it became likely that he would soon be arrested, he flew to Helsinki in Finland.
Edamaruku has now spent over a year in Finland. “I have travelled to some of the most backward and rural areas of India to expose myths and superstitions. But I have never faced a situation like this. One would assume that people in Mumbai would be more sensible and tolerant,” he says on the phone from Helsinki. He says he wants to return to India but as the situation stands, he will get arrested without bail here.
All for pointing out the truth and unweaving the rainbow.
Edamaruku is a true hero. He’ll be speaking at The Amazing Meeting next week in Las Vegas. If you’re there, make sure you check him out and give him your support in any way possible.