Nobel laureate casts doubts over homoeopathic system

Chennai: Holding that real science is based only on experiments and data and not by beliefs, Nobel laureate Venkatraman Ramakrishnan on Thursday cast doubts over the homoeopathic medicine system for its scientific validation.

“I have to be honest and say this is not a problem you can legislate. You can make homoeopathy illegal, if you want. But that’s not the solution,” he said to a query on the scientific validation of homoeopathy medicine system.

“The solution is to educate people… teach them about what is scientific process, how we learn to believe things and how we distinguish truth and falsehood in science. And that’s the way to actually convince people,” he said at ‘The Sceptical Scientist’ for S V Narasimhan Memorial Oration, organised by Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan here.

Ramakrishnan, an expert on ribosomes in Cambridge University, said many global pharmaceutical companies introduce products without completing research.

Explaining how much effect a placebo has on an ignorant patient, he said there are medical systems that work by chance and not by scientific experiments.

Asked how as a scientist he could explain what is god to a four-year old, Ramakrishnan said, “I don’t think it’s the job of scientists to comment on religion and it’s not the job of religion to comment on scientific methods.”

On the recently reported discovery of neutrinos, he said if that was indeed true, then time travel might become actually possible. (PTI)

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