An Unscientific Science Planetarium in Hyderabad? Cosmic show concludes with Veda Mantra

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BM Birla Planetarium hyderabad
Birla Planetarium, Hyderabad

Hyderabad: 'The B M Birla Science Centre in Hyderabad is one of the most prestigious institutions in the country and is a famous tourism spot in Hyderabad. Particularly very busy during weekened, several school children often visit this place as part of their Science Projects.

However, the Sky Shows seems to be practicing unscientific things such as having a 'Godess Durga' portrayal placed on the 'Cosmic Presentation' projector as seen in the below image. According to the BM Birla Science Center's official website, Cosmic Presentations in the B M Birla Planetarium have been given a better rating than those in the Japan, US, Europe and elsewhere.

Noted Humanist & promoter of Scientific temper Babu Gogineni said "It is always going to be a disaster when you link a temple and a Science Center! A disaster for Science. The voice in the show is that of Dr. B.G. Siddharth's who is well known and is the Director General of the Birla Centres nationwide. I have known him for many years, and collaborated with him too briefly in connection with Science resources from France"

"The poetic speculations and ecstasy in a language that is no longer useful for Science should be seen just as that! There is some Philosophy, some curious outpourings, some magical thinking in the ancient Sanskrit texts, and thus there is historic significance but definitely no knowledge that is of use to contemporary Science". Babu added.

Durga Mata photo in planetarium
Godess Durga photo on Cosmic Projector

However, during the show, you can hear phrases such as 'Parama Purush' and some chants of mantras strategically added in the show as explanatory which you may not find in Japan, US and elsewhere. But it does not stop there, a show (English) held at 6:00 PM on 4th November 2017 concludes the Cosmic Presentation with a verse from Rig Veda. This show, believed to be an everyday routine is however titled as "AN INCREDIBLE VOYAGE THROUGH THE UNIVERSE".

I visited this Science center along with my 6 year old son, who asked me 'what is a Heaven and where is it located in the Sky?' pointing to a project of illusion titled 'Waters from the heaven'. It was also tough for me to explain him about the imaginary 'parama purush' and where he lives.

Noting that the BM Birla Science Centre is an independent institution run by a trust, they can just say that they are free to practice faith.  But it is a question of scientific morality whether or not they can talk and practice such things which are, as on today Unscientific and may put kids in confusion!  It is for the parents / schools to be cautioned when you visit this Centre, especially when you intend to teach some scientific temper.