Thursday, June 3, 2010

what ever became of Prahlad Jani? a follow-up

Do you remember Prahlad Jani? He is the man in India who claims that he has not had anything to eat or drink for 70 years. This blog posted his story back in April, as Mr. Jani began a scientific study that would test his claims.
Yesterday, a reader posted a question: What happened to Jani? How did the test come out? Here's what I found...

ABC News reported that Dr. Sudhir Shah, who tested Mr. Jani at Sterling Hospital in Ahmedabad, claims that Mr. Jani is authentic. (note: ABC News does not express agreement with Dr. Shah's claims.)

He told ABC News, "We studied him for 15 days with him taking no water or food." Later, the doctor said that Jani gargled water and took baths, but did not consume anything.

Attending doctors said that Jani is "thin, but healthy." The blog that recorded the results reports that researchers were "amazed." (link) Some others are sold on the story.

But not everyone is amazed. ABC also noted that many people believe he is a fraud and that the research is skewed (to say it nicely). It is easy to see why so many (including the author of this blog) are very skeptical. It is also easy to see why Reuters, BBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, and the American Journal of Medicine (to mention a few) have not proclaimed a fascinating scientific find. In fact, I found no reports of doctors, scientists, or news agencies that are treating the results seriously.

There are just too many unanswered questions and too many inconsistencies. For example:
  • Dr. Shah has not made his "data" available to outside sources and does not plan to.
  • There were no outside independent researchers.
  • Shah's findings were not released to a reputable news organization or medical publication for corroboration, but rather, released to a blog.
  • The "after" picture of Mr. Jani is the same as one that was released before the test. (In other words, no real "after" picture.)
And the obvious questions continue....
  • Why just 15 days of testing? After all, Jani claims to have gone 70 years without food or water... why hurry a ground-breaking study? Granted, he has been "studied" in the past, but always for shorter periods of time and with questionable / closed testing methods.
  • If the results are truly amazing, why has not the entire world scientific community been notified and given the documents? After all, there is something to be learned here. All of humanity could benefit.
  • If Jani is thinner after 15 days... how has he survived 70 years?
  • Why did he have to "gargle" over the days of his test? Why were the standards of the test breached? How often does he have to put water in his mouth?
  • Why do some people in his own home town call him a notorious fraud?
  • Why this doctor? After all, he is the same guy who did this same sort of "research" on Jani back in 2003 (with the same sort of ambiguous findings. (link)). Why not get an independent, reputable doctor who has no relationship with Jani or stake in the study?
hmmmmmmm. In the end, the "study" accomplished nothing. Some will believe that the test proves Jani's legitimacy. Others will believe that the peculiar "test" methods only prove he is a fraud. Either way, others will recognize that the "ability" to neither eat nor drink would be a curse, not a blessing.

original post:


fgallopp said...

thanks for the follow-up...I agree with you, i think he is a fake and everybody who tested him is in the joke....thought we had something groundbreaking for humanity..owell =/

FriendinME said...

thanks for reading and for reminding me to post it. :)

Unknown said...

Good work