Abraham Kovoor's challenge
- I, Abraham T. Kovoor of "Tiruvalla", Pamankada Lane, Colombo-6 do hereby state that l am prepared to pay an award of 100, 000 Sri Lankan rupees to any one from any part of the world who can demonstrate supernatural or miraculous powers under fool-proof and fraud-proof conditions. This offer will remain open till my death or till I find the first winner.
- Read the serial number of a sealed up currency note.
- Produce an exact replica of a currency note.
- Stand stationary on burning cinders for half a minute without blistering the feet.
- Materialise from nothing an object I ask.
- Move or bend a solid object using psychokinetic power.
- Read the thought of another person using telepathic powers.
- Make an amputated limb grow even one inch by prayer, spiritual or faith healing powers, Lourdes water, holy ash, blessing etc.
- Levitate in the air by yogic power.
- Stop the heart-beat for five minutes by yogi power.
- Stop breathing for thirty minutes by yogi power.
- Walk on water.
- Leave the body in one place and reappear in another place.
- Predict a future event.
- Develop creative intelligence or get enlightened through transcendental or yogic meditation.
- Speak or understand an unknown language as a result of rebirth or by being possessed by a spirit, holy or evil.
- Produce a spirit or ghost to be photographed.
- Disappear from the negative when photographed.
- Get out of a locked room by spiritual power.
- Increase the quantity by weight of a substance by divine power.
- Detect a hidden object.
- Convert water into petrol or wine.
- Convert wine into blood.
- Astrologers and palmists, who hoodwink the gullible by saying that astrology and palmistry are perfectly "Scientific", can win my award if they can pick out correctly—within a margin of five percent error—those of males, females, and living and the dead from a set of ten palm prints or astrological charts giving the exact time of birth correct to the minute, and places of birth with their latitudes and longitudes.
I invite miracle performers like Satya Sai Baba, Pandrimalai Swamigal, Neelakanta Tathaji, Nirmala Devi Srivastava, Pujya Dadaji, Dattabal, Triprayar Yogini, Gtirudev Anandamurthi, Kamubhai, Chinmayanand, Acharya Rajneesh, Muktanand, Swami Rama, Swami Haridas, Sivabalayogi, Bhagavan Gnanananda, Gurumaharaj-ji, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Hazarath Ali, Dr. Vadlaimudi, C. S. Teerthangar, R.P.Tiwari, Uri Geller, Nelya Michailova, Jeane Dixon, Sybil Leek and the numerous "professors" of astrology and palmistry, in India and numerous other gurus, swamijis, mahants, acharyas, andas, babas and bhagavans who have found fresh pastures and wealthier gullibles in Western Countries, to take up my challenge and prove to skeptics like me that they are not hoaxers.
The challenge today
Dr. Kovoor died in 1978. Until his death none could claim the award amount. Some fraudsters who sought publicity by taking on his challenge had to forfeit the initial deposit. After the death of Dr. Kovoor, Basava Premanand continued his challenge by offering Rs.100,000 (One Hundred Thousand Indian Rupees) to any person who will demonstrate any psychic, supernatural or paranormal ability of any kind under satisfactory observing conditions.
A similar challenge from James Randi of James Randi Educational Foundation also is in force offering a one-million-dollar prize to anyone who can show, under proper observing conditions, evidence of any paranormal, supernatural, or occult power or event.