Lucknow: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday said the next door pundit can give astronomical predictions and one need not depend on US observatories, emphasising on contributions of ancient Indian knowledge.
A former Physics lecturer, Singh, a senior BJP leader, said this while underlining the need for "spiritual development" of students and inculcating traditional values in them.
"Many times our media is confused. They say that US observatory has informed about lunar and solar eclipse on a particular date...Don't look at an observatory, ask any pundit next to you. They will open the 'Panchang' (Hindu calendar) and tell you the dates of eclipse 100 year ago and also 100 years hence," Singh said while addressing the convocation of Lucknow University here.
"Our saints had said that Earth existed 1.96 'arab'(196 crore) years ago. Earlier, science did not accept this but later it had to. What they tell is run by our channels..They should have asked Pundits," he said hailing the ancient Indian contribution to astrology, science and mathematics.
Stating that no other country possesses the knowledge, which India has, Singh said be it theorems of Trigonometry, Algebra or others no other country could match our knowledge.
"Indian cosmological calculations are in tune with modern scientific calculations," the minister said.
Citing example of highly-educated youth involved in terror activities, Singh said here knowledge devoid of values is "disastrous" for society.
"When knowledge is cut off from traditional values, it becomes disastrous. Civilisations which get cut off from their traditions and values do not survive for long. It was India which showed a big heart and gave message of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family)," he said.
Objecting to "hi and bye" culture, the minister asked students not to indulge in it and instead follow traditions and touch feet of their parents and elders.
"Today, youths say 'hi and bye' even to their parents. Instead, they should touch parents' feet as a mark of respect," Singh said, adding that "Jo jhukna nahi jaante, woh toot jaate hain".
In his address, Singh also highlighted difference between positive and negative thinking with mathematical formula and advised students to work for their self-development and that of others around them.