A senior official in the Centre’s Narendre Modi government on Tuesday defended its advisory for pregnant women in order to ensure the births of healthy babies.
In a booklet issued by Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy under Ayush ministry had advised moms-to-be to avoid sex, meat and develop pure thoughts during pregnancy.
According to the booklet, as published by Hindustan Times, the CCRYN asked the pregnant women to stay away from desire, anger, attachment, hatred and lust adding that they ought to have also avoided ‘bad company’ and ‘be with good people in stable and peaceful conditions only.’
Other pure practices included hanging ‘some good and beautiful pictures in the bedroom, which will effect the child also.’ The booklet also asked mothers to read ‘the life stories of great personalities’ and develop spiritual thoughts.
The news evoked sharp criticism from experts, who argued that the advisory by a ministry under a BJP government lacked scientific evidence.
Faced with public ridicule, Dr Ishwara N Acharya, director in-charge of the CCRYN, told ANI that ‘tips’ were “just a suggestion or an advisory” and not a prescription.
He said, “Non-veg should be avoided during pregnancy. Never wrote sex must be avoided.”
This is not the first time BJP or its Hindutva affiliates have made comments not backed by scientific evidence. An RSS backed body had run into trouble after it organised a seminar on conceiving a perfect baby.
Billed as a ‘garbh sanskar’ workshop, Dr Hitesh Jani, who heads the RSS-affiliated body, had said that “garbh sanskar can produce genius babies”.
According to other reports, the organisation was also working towards producing ‘perfect, customised child.’ The organisation said that to achieve this, three months of “shuddhikaran (purification)” for parents, intercourse at a time decided by planetary configurations, complete abstinence after the baby is conceived, and procedural and dietary regulations were needed.
“The parents may have lower IQ, with a poor educational background, but their baby can be extremely bright. If the proper procedure is followed, babies of dark-skinned parents with lesser height can have fair complexion and grow taller,” Jani had said.
In the past, Baba Ramdev, a known BJP supporter, had claimed to have produced a medicine, capable of helping couple conceive male child.