Monday, January 13, 2014

Jagannath Chatterjee

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Jagannath Chatterjee is an Indian anti-vaccine and anti-GMO activist. According to his biography at Living Farms,  Chatterjee was once a journalist with a national English-language daily newspaper in India.  He moved on to a public sector company, rising to be a regional director of the company.

Chatterjee, according to his page, has been campaigning against vaccinations since 1985.

He is best known for publishing two screeds against vaccines:
  1. August 20, 2008 40 Infallible Reasons Why You Should Not Vaccinate Infants
  2. September 16, 2011 50 Reasons To Protect Infants From Vaccines
The two documents are quite similar, as a side-by-side comparison shows, and are equally mistaken and fearmongering on all counts.

The 2008 document was the subject of several devastating online critiques. In short, every assertion of fact Mr. Chatterjee made was false or misguided.

Nonetheless, both the 2008 document and the 2011 document have been widely distributed, and Mr. Chatterjee's Facebook page is very popular with the US anti-vaccine, autism-hating contingent.

Chatterjee claims to be vaccine injured himself,
... Vaccinated in 1979, at 17, by the MMR I have suffered horribly since. I went on to research on vaccines and today I fight like hell for the other kids.
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I am a vaccine victim. I am irreversibly damaged. I am in great unimaginable pain for the last 33 years. I was 17 and was a relatively healthy person. They made me a wreck. I am physically mentally and emotionally disabled. It is subtle it is gross. But it is.
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Mr. Chatterjee has made friends in the US who he credits with "healing" his vaccine injuries, including the notorious Andrew Wakefield and a US anti-vaccine homeopath, Sheri Nakkan.

PEOPLE WHO HAVE SHAPED MY THINKINGAnd then one fine morning crossed the man we love the most, adore and look forward to. None other than the giant, the Messiah, Dr Andrew Wakefield himself! He wrote to me that he had come to know about my campaign from his wife who surfed the net and that he was sorry I was hurt by the MMR. He approved of the homeopathic treatment I was resorting to, and he said he felt bad he could not help me physically because we were so far apart. I wrote back saying that his personal mail was the greatest gift he could give to me and just requested for an autographed photograph, which he dutifully provided and which I have nurtured like a gift from God. He just came and went but that minute personal God given touch touch gave me the resolve to continue fighting and still gives me hope when I tend to loose it at times. It is good to know that we are not alone and that certain doctors too are with us. God Bless you Sir! Here he is in the midst of a campaign along with his wife.

Slowly as I fought my disability, thanks to kind homeopath, and started regaining more of my memory and faculty of learning, Sheri Nakken Vaccinedangers came into my life. She is a Registered Nurse who turned a vaccine researcher, I never asked her why, and she took me under her wings, teaching me both about the faulty science of vaccines, pointing out how ineffective they were, how they were hyped by a corrupt medical establishment and finally the horrible damage they were causing to society. She did it by providing me material from medical journals, quoting from peer reviewed published scientific studies, showing me copies of internal correspondence between doctors and the vaccine industry, and a whole host of literature I could have never otherwise have had access too. I salute this second Guru of mine and wish her all the best in her continuous tirade against this horrible medical intervention as she moves across continents lecturing or taking classes, and also corresponding with those interested and sharing crucial information. Thank you Sheri, I will never forget the way you helped me learn.
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Anti-vaccine checklist: how does Mr. Chatterjee score?
  1. Claiming that all vaccines are unsafe and ineffective Yes
  2. Claiming better sanitation and nutrition account for the 20th century decline in vaccine-preventable diseases  Yes
  3. Claiming that vaccines cause diseases and conditions such as autism, asthma, SIDS, or shaken baby syndrome Yes
  4. Claiming that anecdotal evidence is superior to scientific evidence; rejecting science and epidemiology Yes
  5. Cherry picking and misrepresenting the evidence Yes
  6. Using  logical fallacies without shame in arguing Yes
  7. Conspiracy mongering Yes
  8. Silencing criticism (especially by deleting online material), rather than responding to it Unknown
  9. (If in business) Profiting from the sale of products and services that spread fear, uncertainty and doubt about vaccines, or products and services that are said to be superior to vaccines and conventional medicine in preventing disease No

I have the sense that Mr. Chatterjee really believes everything he writes, unlike some other anti-vaccine figures. He lacks the education or training to  understand epidemiology, vaccine development, or vaccine safety trialsl, Mr. Chatterjee may fall into the category of "useful idiot": "people who are propagandists for a cause whose goals they are not fully aware of, and who are used cynically by the leaders of the cause."

Sources: Critiques of Mr. Chatterjee's ideas, expressed in his two lists
Other Sources


  1. Just ouyt of curiosity, what is his supposed vaccine "damage"?