Dons challenge divine guidance

14 July 2011 02:40 am - 13     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The much-hyped arsenic issue took a new turn with a team of academics attached to the Science Faculty of Kelaniya University criticizing some of their fellow academics who attributed their research findings on the cause of the kidney disease in Rajarata to advice from divine forces.

Earlier, Dean of the Science Faculty of the Kelaniya University Prof. Nalin de Silva had stated arsenic was the main cause of the disease, and he based his research findings on advice from a divine power called in normal jargon ‘Natha Deviyo’. However, a group of 49 academics of the Faculty including all the senior professors have written to Vice Chancellor Prof. Sarath Amunugama saying that such statements have tarnished the image of the entire Faculty.

They have noted in their letter that the Faculty of Science of the University of Kelaniya waswell known both nationally and internationally as a centre of excellence which dispenses knowledge of Science by producing a large number of eminent scientists since its inception in 1967.

The letter says:

“It has been accepted practice of the researchers of the faculty to publish their findings at academic conferences, seminars and in internationally accepted peer reviewing journals. It is a known fact that these research results often receive high recognition in academic circles, nationally and internationally.

“It has been stated over and over again by some members of this research group over the media that these research results have been based on assumptions and advice received from divine godly forces.

“At times the present dean of the Faculty of Science, the leader of this research group, had also openly stated to the media that they do not accept the principles and methodology of the globally recognized scientific methods taught within the Faculty of Science.

“It is evident that these statements and actions have led to a very bad impression about the University of Kelaniya in general and the Faculty of Science in particular, among the public and the scientific community.  Not only does this situation degrade the reputation of the Faculty which was achieved with great effort in the last 45 years, but also jeopardizes the recognition of the graduates passing out from the Faculty in future.”

The academics have stressed that they conduct their researches only according to the internationally accepted standards and practices.
(Kelum Bandara)

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  Comments - 13

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  • tommy Thursday, 14 July 2011 05:37 AM

    people don't know who to trust

    gim Thursday, 14 July 2011 05:38 AM

    This is a good move. Its good all who against prof. nalin could arrange a open argument.

    Niroshan Senanayake Thursday, 14 July 2011 06:12 AM

    We the general public need the real truth and don't care whether the knowledge comes from divine power or so called scientists.
    Also those scientists who called the scientists do you have any clear answer for this Rajarata kidney disease and a remedy?
    Please could you give us a list of prominent so called scientists who have passed out since 1967, Because the general public we want to respect them and give our gratitude for the work they have done.

    Shayam Thursday, 14 July 2011 06:42 AM

    This is a good example to show how politically biased people can damage the credibility of scientific community.

    Roshan Thursday, 14 July 2011 07:20 AM

    At last!

    osanda Thursday, 14 July 2011 07:24 AM

    There is so much in this world that the science can not explain...so there is a conflict between the paranormal and science.
    Science is still developing. but in this case we know that the these drug companies are looking ways to get away from the crimes they have committed.

    sama Friday, 15 July 2011 10:31 AM

    yes, Arsenic issue now turned the other way.this is what chemicals importers expected.they don't care peoples of the country.they earn money and share it with so called scientists.

    Basila Thursday, 14 July 2011 07:51 AM

    Any evidence there our old generation used Chemical fertilizer for their agriculture.

    christo Thursday, 14 July 2011 10:33 AM

    Hela Urumaya mokada dan kiyanne? I am very interested to know.

    Calistus Jayatilleke Thursday, 14 July 2011 11:06 AM

    Deiyo, Saakki!

    Niroshan Senanayake Thursday, 14 July 2011 12:30 PM

    Through out the mankind history humans have worked with divine powers more than the so called scientists.......

    nanda Thursday, 14 July 2011 04:29 AM

    We knew that will come ....
    There are stander way(s) to do research, apperenlty they are not aware of it

    Ausia Thursday, 14 July 2011 04:30 AM

    the ideal method to come to conclusion from a research study is to collect systematic data (without any subjective erors - bias) and then to analyse and to come to a conclusion with logical interpretations. This "divine" group had started with the conclusion - there are arsenic and it is the reason - and then they collected and presented data to justify their belief (in a very subjective/bias way). This is misleading and wrong not only accordng to the science, but also according to logical thinking of Buddhism (as they are buddhists) and the common sence of any normal person,


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