"Superstition Reigns" by Rahul Singh, published in The Times of India today:
"Amitabh Bachchan, an icon for tens of millions of Indians, makes his daughter-in-law [Aishwarya Rai] perform outlandish ceremonies because she is supposedly under the evil influence of Mars. Politicians routinely consult astrologers before taking important decisions, despite abundant proof that astrology is no science at all, just quackery. Horoscopes continue to be cast in most families and palmists consulted. A newly-inducted cabinet minister insists that her bungalow be completely redesigned because it does not follow vaastu principles, a system nobody had heard of till only a few years ago."Superstition in all its ugly forms is sickeningly pervasive in India, even among educated people who ought to know better. We waste a lot of time and money and unnecessarily make life difficult for ourselves as well as others, all in the name of something that doesn't withstand rational scrutiny.