If someone told you that he had all the remedies for your problems provided you part with whatever amount of money he cites, beware of him. The warning comes from famous astrologer Kanippayyur Narayanan Namboodiri, who insisted that astrology did not work that way.
Astrology provides a fertile ground for unscrupulous elements to cash in on the superstitions and insecurities of gullible people. We talked to celebrated astrologers who were only happy to expose the frauds who defamed their trade.
Hari Pathanapuram shared the story of an elderly woman who approached him to confirm a damning prediction by another so-called astrologer.
The woman was so shaken by the death of her husband eight months ago that she wanted to consult an astrologer in central Kerala. Settled in Qatar along with her four sons, she was an easy target for the fraud.
The astrologer made some mental calculations about the man’s hour of death. A pall of gloom prevailed as he peered into his ceremonial board. His expression turned more grave when he asked about the birth date and time of her sons.
The family was in mortal danger, he told the already worried woman. Yamaraja, the lord of death, had left behind his staff when he visited the family eight months ago to take away the soul of her husband. He would make a comeback for the staff exactly a year later and he would have to take away another soul!
The astrologer even blurted out the zodiac signs of the persons likely to be the next target of Yamaraja. The signs belonged to the mother and two of her sons.
The woman was crestfallen. Her sons laughed away the strange theory but they eventually yielded to their mother’s pleas to do as the astrologer said. Yamaraja’s staff had to be sent back to the netherworld before he visited the family. It would cost Rs 60,000. He got his money right away.
Relieved (of money), the family left for Qatar. Not long ago, the woman met an old friend from her native village at a social function in Qatar. Their small talk would soon turn into a shocking revelation for the old woman.
The friend said her husband died a few months ago and the family was in danger of losing another member but for the timely intervention of an astrologer.
The mother was startled. She asked her friend who the astrologer was. He turned out to be her savior too. The women realized that they had been taken for a ride.
The old woman knew that the astrologer was a fake one but she was still wary of his prediction. He later went to Hari Pathanapuram to confirm that the menacing staff was not present in her house. Pathanapuram said that he did his calculations and found no danger to the family. He told the woman that she had just been duped by a fraud. “Yamaraja was not likely to be aware of his forgotten staff,” he chuckled.
Astrologers have been sounding out the fraudulent practitioners for long. “When we go to a doctor, we do a lot of background checks. You should have the same level of care when you select an astrologer. It is a science. A lot depends on the astrologer’s knowledge of this science. Do not go after magic and miracles,” said Peringode Sankaranarayanan.
(This is the first part of a series on the fraud passed on as astrology. Watch this space for more reports.)
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