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G Noida: Science show helps govt school students debunk superstitions

From revealing the trick behind ‘bathing in fire’ to ‘creating fire out of coconut shells’, experts at the science show debunked various age-old myths associated with Indian society

noida Updated: Feb 11, 2018 22:42 IST
Vaibhav Jha
Vaibhav Jha
Hindustan Times
Science show,myth,Jewar
As many as 300 children and 50 teachers of various government primary schools of Jewar attended the science show.

To debunk myths and superstitions regarding magic and ‘sorcery’ and to introduce a scientific temperament to school students, the District Science Club of Gautam Budh Nagar held a science experiment show in Jewar on Saturday.

From revealing the trick behind ‘bathing in fire’ to ‘creating fire out of coconut shells’, experts at the science show debunked various age-old myths associated with Indian society, which gives rise to superstitions such as ‘jaadu-tona’ (sorcery).

“Often, we have heard about the magic trick called bathing with fire, wherein the person plays with fire on his body. The trick is based on the fact that human body starts getting affected by a fire at 800 degrees Celsius while inflammable products, such as kerosene oil, burn at temperatures below 400 degrees Celsius. So, the person applies kerosene oil at specific points of their body and move the fire from one point to another. The trick is to hold the fire for less than a second at one place so that there is no repercussion on the body,” Brahm Prakash, a former member of Haryana Vigyan Manch, who was invited for the show, said.

Another famous trick which was debunked by Prakash was creating fire from coconut shells.

“Often, you see tantric babas put bhaboot (‘holy’ powder) in a coconut shell, after which a fire erupts and then he uses it to scare off ghosts in a person. The real trick here is that sodium metal is kept in the coconut and the result of the reaction between sodium and moisture is fire. Therefore, these babas use moisture on sodium to create fire,” Prakash said.

He also debunked the trick in which tantricks are seen conjuring bhaboot out of thin air. “You must have seen that tantric babas chant some mantras and they conjure bhaboot out of thin air. Actually, they store small capsules in their hand, which are filled with talcum powder, rice starch, dry cow dung and other ingredients. It is just a trick of hand to hold the capsule neatly and burst it to create bhaboot,” Prakash said.

As many as 300 children and 50 teachers of various government primary schools of Jewar attended the science show.

“It is a good initiative by the science club to debunk these myths with the use of scientific explanations,” Sunil Dutta, primary education officer, Jewar, Gautam Budh Nagar, said.

First Published: Feb 11, 2018 22:42 IST