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Prasad Rao

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Interesting conversation with Savitha on FB ! Cross posting it ..

Savitha Anna Varghese: serously! isn't it just as effective to put ur hands together n pray? Probability/Chance outcomes stay just the same.

Prasad Rao :Am against pointless laws such as these. Practises outlawed here are, arguably, covered by cheating or by intent to cause harm already. So why the push? signing a new law (or supporting it) is an elite social signal (as robin hanson would put it). It allows social posturing while the cost of its implementation gets borne by the broader society.

JLP is another example of a signalling achievement. No real breakthrough on corruption but meat for the chattering classes.

Implementation requires the status of the beat policeman to be raised, for them to enter the middle class and have access to modern tools. For increase in their numbers and consequent increase in incentives for the honest to join

Now .. Who wants to bear this cost? :)

Savitha Anna Varghese : True that! endless Legislation, very little breakthrough.
the signalling theory application here I'm not sure abt. Isn't tht for situations of imperfect info when potential clients are looking to invest.
The Jan Lokpal Bill may fit this but in the case of Black Magic eradication who are we signalling to and to wht benefit?
Also...Under existing laws:
can the police/Vigilance officer file a case if the victim does not complain? i.e., murder does not require it but what about acts of cheating/duping (the seekers of black magic solutions may not view it as cheating/duping)?
Are all the acts listed in the schedule of the black magic draft bill covered under existing laws?
What if money or other services were not exchanged? Would it be alright to conduct these activities then?

Below - the only link I could find of the draft bill (2005) which lists the activities to be outlawed
Article 2 in the list looks like it could be used to send a lot of purported miracle workers of all faiths to jail.
let's get 'em! :) no, just kidding. cannot enforce it since even the enforcers have faith in them.

Prasad Rao : Article 2: "Display of so called miracles by a person and thereby earning money and to deceive, defraud and terrorise people by propagation and circulation of so called miracles."
ummm .. "deceive, defraud and terrorise people"?! .. arent they outlawed already?! why another law linking it to "so called miracles"?!
i can see lawyers having a field day arguing over which law should be applied while the accused are out on bail :-s

Article 3 :"With a view to receive blessings of super natural power to follow the evil and aghori practices which causes danger to life or grievous hurt: and to instigate, encourage or compel others to follow such practices."
if you can prove that a practice "causes danger to life or grievous hurt"?, what are the lacunae in existing public safety laws ?!
take a counter example : i offer you a drug that may cure your cancer but it can cause severe vomiting, hair loss and osteoporosis. the drug has, by your own admission, a 1 in 5 chance of success. you call it science, i call it miracle mongering, an "evil and aghori" practice :). what in the world will you outlaw as an "evil and aghori" practice?! to me, this sounds like a "witchhunt", not an attempt at law.

maybe, a lawyer might have more info. i am finding it difficult to believe such a shoddy draft was even considered !
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