Let's raise the spirits
Indian paranormal investigators share about real-life cases across the country in a new book
It is, perhaps, only fitting that a paranormal investigator dedicates their book to all the spirits who took time out to talk to them. That's Sarbajeet Mohanty for you, and the book in question is the recently-released title The Spirits Talk to Me: True Accounts of Paranormal Investigations (Hachette India) that has been co-authored with top horror writer Neil D'Silva. The book is an account of 10 key, real-life cases that Mohanty, founder of the city-based Parapsychology and Investigations Research Society (PAIRS) has dealt with along with co-founder Pooja Vijay and other aides, across India — from a haunted courthouse near Kolkata to a film studio in Mumbai.
The duo started working on the book in 2018. Mohanty would share audio files to D'Silva where, he says, every minute detail was important to convey like the colour of a car, for instance. D'Silva would then write the chapters. "We wanted to focus on not just the paranormal aspect but the human aspect, too — what were we going through as investigators. The aim is not to scare people but give an insight into the paranormal world," Mohanty asserts.
As the world's youngest certified demonologist, 23-year-old Mohanty's objective was also to demystify what his work, riddled with misconceptions, actually entails. And it's hard work, indeed because not every place is actually haunted; he highlights how natural causes also lead to hallucinations like geomagnetic hotspots, radiation and methane gas leaks.
From an investigation of Kacheri Badi in Kolkata in 2016, which is detailed in the chapter House of Bones
But at the same time, not everyone is open-minded to face the facts. To elaborate, he cites one eventful case in his home state, Odisha: "We visited a big dairy farm where the cows and people who lived around it were reported to be acting weirdly. After investigating for three hours, we found nothing and thought we'll wrap up. And when we conveyed that to the people, about 30 of them stood up like they were going to attack us. They said, 'How can you say there is no ghost here?' And I stood there thinking, 'Uh, isn't that a good thing?' But we literally had to flee."
Mohanty and D'Silva are collaborating on another book titled Ghost Whispers that will be released next year. It promises to be the go-to book for all those interested in the subject. Laid out like a paranormal encyclopaedia, it will cover 10 important topics including Electro Voice Phenomena and Near Death Experience.
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