Theatre At IISER-K Against Misinterpretation of Science And Superstition

Dr. Shilanjan Bhattacharyya as Sankha Maharaj and Dr. Ayan Banerjee as Dr.Sreejon Dutta in the play 'The Uncertainty of Principles'Dr. Shilanjan Bhattacharyya as Sankha Maharaj and Dr. Ayan Banerjee as Dr.Sreejon Dutta in the play 'The Uncertainty of Principles'
Dr. Pradeep Parrack as 'Rajat' and Dr. Anindita Bhadra as 'Asima' in the play

Dr. Pradeep Parrack as ‘Rajat’ and Dr. Anindita Bhadra as ‘Asima’ in the play

Kalyani, Jan. 16:In an effort to convey a clear message to its students and teachers who often suffer from conflict between science and religious superstitions, the IISER-K on Wednesday evening invited a group of scientists, who formed a theatre group ‘Kalyani Mukhosh’, to stage a play that projects sheer hypocrisy of educated class and misinterpretation of science that suits their psyche. 

The play titled “The Uncertainty of Principles”, which has its own interpretations in science being one of the ‘exact inequtions in physics’ introduced by German physicist Werner Heisenberg, shows how well educated parents of a top scientist in the country surrender before Sankha Maharaj,  a godman who cajole people to misinterpret science for personal luxury. The theatre was staged at lecture hall-7 at IISER-K campus in Kalyani. 

It showcases the conflict between science and organized religion, juxtaposes the ideology of a young

Professor Sreejon with mother Asima: Played by Dr. Ayan Banerjee and Dr. Anindita Bhadra

Professor Sreejon with mother Asima: Played by Dr. Ayan Banerjee and Dr. Anindita Bhadra

scientist against a society still deeply ensconced in the irrationality and insecurities subjected to the unpredictability of life. The protagonist in the play Professor Sreejon Dutta, a top physicist (played by playwright-director Ayan Banerjee, as associate professor of IISER-Kolkata) was shell shocked when he learnt that the head of the premier science institution to which he is attached, also visits Sankh Maharaj regularly for ‘marg darshan’.

Sreejon eventually decides to confront the godman to save his parents from his clutches. His endeavour to fight the superstition and exploitation of the Sankha Maharaj forms the crux of the play.

Anindita Bhadra, an associate professor of IISER-K, who played the role of Sreejon’s mother (Asima) said, “We tried to show how religion often offers easy solace in the form of so-called Godmen who exploit the helplessness of people to enjoy luxury”.

IISER-K Director Sourav Pal said, “Many of us practice science but surrender before religion. This play will help to identify such double standard”.