An Indian Health Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, has come out with a most unusual explanation for why people develop cancer.

Who is Sarma and what did he say

According to Sarma who holds an office in the Assam state government, cancer is punishment for sins committed by a person in a past life.

He explained further that people could also develop the disease through “divine justice” if their parents had sinned.

Reactions from cancer patients

According to Independent, The minister’s comments drew anger from cancer sufferers, their families, and from political opponents of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, of which he is a member.

Below are Sarma’s own words…

“God makes us suffer when we sin.

“Sometimes we come across young men getting inflicted with cancer or young men meeting with accidents.

“If you observe the background you will come to know that it’s divine justice. Nothing else. We have to suffer that divine justice.

“In this lifetime or in our previous life, or perhaps my father or mother, perhaps that young man did not do but his father has done something wrong.”

Author: Yemi Olarinre