Facing widespread ridicule after two of its invitees made unscientific claims during their lectures; the Indian Science Congress (ISC) has decided to go for a policy change, which will include stipulating a process of selection of speakers and scrutinizing the content of their speech.
The ISC General Secretary Premendu P. Mathur said the congress dissociates itself from the controversial statements and it will ensure that only right kinds of speakers are invited.
In a lecture given on Friday, during the 106th Indian Science Congress, in Jalandhar, G. Nageswara Rao, Andhra University Vice Chancellor, had made the unsubstantiated claims that "Kauravas" were born out of stem cell and that Lord Vishnu had possessed heat missile technology.
"We condemn and dissociate ourselves from whatever comments he has made. We have now made it a policy. First the speakers will have to submit an abstract and second an undertaking that they will not deviate from the subject," Mr Mathur told news agency IANS.
"However senior a person is, he will have to give an abstract and their lecture will be subject to certain kind of moderation. From next year, the policy is going to change," he added.
Speaking to reporters earlier, ISC President Manoj Chakrabarti said that he was "shocked" by the comments. "How did he (Rao) come to know all this? Is there any evidence? The scientific community is shocked."
Mr Mathur said that the ISC will issue a formal statement denunciating the claims made in the lecture by Mr Rao, once the top officials of the Congress are back in Kolkata, the body's headquarters.