thought you guys would like to check these out:
Where in the World is Hira Manek?
Staring at the sun, again (excerpted from http://radiofreeblogistan.com/categories/blogsalon/)
I am receiving quite a few google hits on something I wrote some time ago on Indian mechanical engineer Hira Ratan Manek, alias Hirachand, who claims to be able to sustain his life on only sunshine and some liquid diet. Recently, essentially the same claims have resurfaced, and again it is NASA that allegedly has tested his sunlight diet.
This 64-year-old mechanical engineer has been tried and tested by US space agency NASA. In June 2002, NASA verified his claims when he spent 130 days with its scientists drinking only water. They have even named such subsistence [~] water and solar energy [~] the 'HRM (Hira Rattan Manek) phenomenon'.
Now NASA wants him to show them how he does it. They hope to use the technique to solve food storage and preservation problems on space expeditions. So on Friday, Hirachand left for New York.
Of course, none of these reports mention anything about who at NASA allegedly tested and verified his claims. His name is not mentioned on NASA's site, in scientific papers or science news publication on the net. The story has made it into innumerable newspapers and web sites promoting various "alternative" ideas, though.
Do we smell a scam? Of course. And not even a very new one.
I am not the only one smelling the scam, as I have also received google hits on my story about the Welsh fasting girl Sarah Jacob, who became a celebrity in the 19th century when she claimed to go for months without food. Sceptical doctors back then set a 24-hour watch on her to disprove her claims, and tragically she died from starvation shortly afterwards.
Not only nutritional experts should be surprised at the claims of Hira Ratan Manek, eye doctors will also take exception to his recommendation of staring at the sun unprotected for an hour. Staring at the sun can severly damage your eyes (yes, your mom was right on that count). So don't try this at home. And don't fall for every hoax you hear.