25 February, 2021

ETmail: Can You Read This

ET/UFO fanatics get ready for their Vindhyas rendezvous, circa 2009

T. Narayan
ETmail: Can You Read This
India's got problems. And one thing we don't need added to our burgeoning list of woes is an alien invasion. But if the prophets of SifTor, an independent Ukrainian organisation looking to set up a research institute in India, are to be believed, we will soon be hosting a giant round of inter-galactic peace talks, tentatively scheduled for 2009. And to think some of you were complaining because Enrique Iglesias didn't tour your city.

I race up the steps of the swanky south Delhi villa—how often do you get to meet renegade Ukrainian scientists, members of the secret (now disbanded) USSR Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence programme (SETI), who claim to be in active contact with aliens?

My guide on this trip to outer space is filmmaker Bhaskar Bhattacharya, who's recently taken these scientists to Nainital to meet Avtar Baba, a supposedly 1,800-year-old yogi famed for his mystical healing powers, and discussed ancient Vedic scripts, fossils and simulacra. "The eastern approach to extra-terrestrial intelligence is fundamentally different from the western. For us,...

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