If Assam’s minister Himanta Biswa Sarma’s words are to be taken seriously, we can avoid suffering from cancer merely by avoiding bad karma. Yes, you hear it right. Sarma, who also happens to be the Health and Education Minister of the state, said that “cancer is nothing but divine justice”. He is also of the opinion that it’s just not your deeds, but your parents bad deeds that could make you a victim of either cancer or accidents.
“We often asked why someone had an accident or was afflicted by cancer. When you look at their background, you will know that it is nothing else but divine justice. Maybe the son hasn’t committed a sin, but the father has. We will have to suffer this divine justice. “
He made this statement at an event on November 21 while addressing high school teachers. He also cautioned the teachers against skipping the classes of young students to protect themselves from God’s wrath.
The statement has come as a shocker to many in the medicine community. A news report on an Assamese channel quotes a medical practitioner as saying:
“I am genuinely shocked by what he is saying. There is no scientific study to back such claims.” – Doctor Nabhaneel Barua “
By Sarma’s own admission in the last five years, as many as 90,000 cancer patients were detected in Assam. Then, as the Health Minister should be giving sermons on the law of karma and divine justice?
Many on social media reminded Sarma that even his father, Kailash Nath Sarma died of cancer to bring home how insensitive his statement.
It is not new for politicians in India to make such bizarre statements. In 2015, when a debate on enlarging the pictoral warning cigarettes packets was on, BJP MP from Assam, Ram Prasad Sharma had sought a “foolproof medical and/or scientific evidence based on thorough research” that tobacco causes cancer, before the decision was okayed.