Call For Media and Government Investigation

of Sathya Sai Baba And his worldwide cult, the Sathya Sai Organization

Archive for June 19th, 2011

Has Sathya Sai Baba’s Will Been Found? Which Will will Prevail? Divine Will or Earthly Will?

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 19, 2011

In a communication just received, a private source of information relates:

“Bhagwati is pro Satyajit and hence threatened to quit the trust, but was pacified. Day before yesterday in a trust meeting, several trust members walked out in a huff. Some trust members are being spied upon by Ratnakar’s agents. My sources tell me that Trust legal advisor Naganand has actually admitted a will was found”.

I feel that we have reasonably, and at quite some length, exposed ex-Chief Justice P.N. Bhagwati.

                                                                                       Sri Sathya Sai Trust’s P.N. Bhagwati – “No Replacement For Baba”

See my articles:

Ex-Chief Justice of India: Sathya Sai Baba “dictated my every single judgement”

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 4, 2011

On Sathya Sai Baba: Times of India, Ex-Chief Justice Interview. What Judge Would So Opine?

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 1, 2011

Indian Ex-Chief Justice: “Wild, Reckless Claims” about Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 29, 2011

I regret, however, that I am not able to proceed with information that I have received, separately, from legal and retired diplomatic sources, which wish to remain highly circumspect.

I will say, however, that I trust there will be alert researchers from the media and other investigative areas who are able to get a bead on how Bhagawati went in pursuit of his United Nations and Chief Justice of India jobs. There is salient opinion of him around Lincoln Court Inn and other legal watering places redolent of his London days. If bona fide investigators contact me, I should be able to point in some useful directions. Email address:  barpittard@gmail.com

Such alert investigators may like to see what they can uncover about the jeweller in Bangalore who long made many gold and silver ornaments, subsequently “materialized” by Sathya Sai Baba. Even nearer to Puttaparthi, journalists should not have too much difficulty in tracking down another such jeweler. Further afield, we are informed, are a jeweler in Mumbai and another in Hyderabad. Still another lost his deal, and was, apparently, deeply upset. Again, we have some direction-pointing resources sleuths may like to use, if it would not lose too much face for them to ask a foreigner:  barrypittard@gmail.com, with professional assurances of confidentiality where required.

Among those sleuthing in and around Puttaparthi are:  Daijiworld Media Network—Anantapur, near to Puttaparthi in the State of Andhra Pradesh,  and feeders for The New Indian Express Group.

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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General

Excerpt From Public Petition (and introduction)

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

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Sai Trust divided over Sathya Sai’s will

The New Indian Express
Updated Jun 19, 2011 at 09:36am IST
 Anantapur: By opening the doors of the Yajurveda Mandir, the legatees of Sathya Sai Baba may only have prised open a pandora’s box.

Along with large quantities of gold, silver and cash, the Sathya Sai Central Trust reportedly found the Baba’s diary and will, the contentious contents of which are widening the rifts within the trust. One group in the trust says the will mandated that prominence be given to the Sai Baba’s long-standing caregiver Satyajit. Another group is denying that a will had been found at all.

The issue of Satyajit’s role in future was the focus of a two-day meeting of the trust on June 14 and 15. Reliable sources say senior trust member and former Supreme Court judge PN Bhagwati is all for prominence to Satyajit.

Sai Trust divided over Sathya Sai's will

When this was opposed some members, he felt hurt and volunteered to withdraw from the trust.

But he was pacified and persuaded to reconsider his decision.

All the same, some senior members are in a serious sulk. One of them is said to have stomped out of Puttaparthi on Friday night, miffed that Satyajit has not been given prominence.

Source say that one member, a Sai veteran of 35 years, was so put out by alleged spying on his office in Puttaparthi, that he would leave Prashanti Nilayam.

Given such rifts in the trust, chances are the governing body may be dissolved, or its aged members allowed to retire after putting in place a working system. But it is highly unlikely that any one person will be given complete control. “Trust members may each be given a specific activity or Seva programmes to handle. This will prevent power being concentrated in a single individual,” a source said.

Meanwhile, Sai diehards, however, say that “things are slowly settling down” in Puttaparthi.

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Anantapur: Will Satyajit Head Satya Sai Baba Trust?

Daijiworld Media Network—Anantapur Anantapur, Jun 17: From the time the doors of Sai Baba’s personal chamber were opened on Friday June 17 and Ratnakar confirmed that about Rs 12 crore in cash and 98 kg gold were found inside the chamber, the media has been awaiting news of the appointment of a new head of the Trust.Satyajit, who hails from the coastal city of Mangalore, was in the news for taking over the Satya Sai Central Trust after the demise of Satya Sai Baba.However, the trustees denied that there were any plans of appointing Satyajit as the head of the trust though he was regarded as being the closest to Sai Baba. Satyajit was the caretaker and a disciple of Godman.According to reliable sources from Puttparthy, three members of the Trust – former Supreme Court judge Justice Bhagavathi, S V Giri, and L Srinivasan  proposed that a prominent post be given to Satyajit which was opposed by R J Ratnakar, nephew of Satya Sai Baba and a member of the Trust.It is learnt that Ratnakar wanted the Trust to give no importance to Satyajit under any circumstances.Reportedly, Baba had written a will appointing Satyajit as his successor. But Ratnakar denied this, saying no such will was found in Sai Baba’s chamber.

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After Decades of Dormancy, Some Indian Media Now Question Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 19, 2011

Given that Robert Priddy‘s and my dear friend the late V.K. Narasimhan was once its Editor, I find a touch of irony in seeing that the Express Group is one of those beginning, if timorously, to venture a critical opinion on Sathya Sai Baba.

With the honorable exception of India Today, our group has had to bust a gut and go blue in the face, in one futile attempt after another, to get leading Indian media to investigate Sathya Sai Baba and his cult.

As I have recounted several times elsewhere, the Editor of one of the top Indian newspapers told me privately:  Sai Baba and his people are too powerful to take on.

India is riven from top to bottom by all manner of gurus and astrologers. But worse are those in that country, which is otherwise admirable in many ways, who know of this and who do not stand up and speak out. The nation is condemned to scorn elsewhere. Diplomats and those with trade, finance and other ties with India alternatively curse, snigger and despair at her – often behind her back. These are simply facts. Sad facts, really.

In Indian press history, there are few Indian editors as respected as V.K.N., who was a man of fine courage, decency and intellect. We both edited at Puttaparthi, and both of us had tasks, now and then, of weeding out utterances of Sathya Sai Baba that struck us as likely to cause confusion among the faithful. See my: The Quiet Weeding Out Of Sathya Sai Baba’s Embarrassing Statements.

V.K.N. was a rare case of one who was not a sycophant around Sathya Sai Baba. But, then, how important it was for Sathya Sai Baba to have someone like V.K.N. around him. And likewise for many other powerful, skilled manipulators all down history.

In this perspective, Sathya Sai Baba was, indeed, a master. How handy it is for a canny, charming, charismatic, but very flawed, leader to have around them the odd individual who seems to have a voice of his own. It can then appear that the leader respects minority individuals. The fawners gather around and applaud such independence as the leader allows, though they are cowards themselves.

But it is all more subtle than this. To the one who is not required to flatter the Emperor, it is most flattering not to have to flatter the Emperor. Thus is the non-flatterer flattered. And enfeebled.

And in India, there is another powerful ingredient. It been in the psychic conditioning for millennia, as I was able to observe close up in my several years in that ancient culture, moving among very rich and very poor. It is the power of the guru figure, and of other cultural icons – movie stars and cricketers especially – that makes a great many Indians lose any strong self-center. Down on their bellies – becoming like earthworms.

I have sometimes both smiled and felt saddened when I have seen Indian political or religious or rationalist radicals, fall for this profound and endemic cultural spell. I think very few in India are able to stop and ponder to a point of catharsis, and of consequent pragmatic change, such a concept as ‘feet of clay’. That is to say, very few who will systematically and resolutely refuse the mystification. India may be plucky enough to face the Chinese, or the Pakistanis, and, even more formidably, the Australians at cricket – but she won’t face her gurus.

It has struck me that considerations like the above snatched away true independence from V.K.N., whom I loved dearly, and still do. I also think these factors play an important role in enfeebling the Indian media and government and other institutions in taking on someone so big as Sathya Sai Baba. Smaller gurus here and there – fine, selectively pick them off. The Indian media and others, sometimes the police (although usually at the behest of power brokers) will go after them. But when it comes to real courage – no. In the West, we fail to deal with the Mr Big’s of crime, and tend to fill the jails with the footsoldiers.

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Satya Sai Trusts assurances fall flat

indianexpress Express News Service , The New Indian Express
Posted on Jun 18, 2011 at 04:11pm IST
PUTTAPARTI (Anantapur): Satya Sai Central Trust had, on several occasions, dismissed several speculations on why Yajurveda Mandiram was not being opened and assured repeatedly that all was well and if the doors were opened, it would be done in the presence of revenue and police officials, members of Satya Sai Baba’s family and the media.

But on Thursday, when the doors of Yajruveda Mandiram, the abode of Satya Sai, were opened, none of the assurances was kept.

Only trust members and two retired judges were present.

No district administration or pol ice official, leave alone mediapersons, was present.

Questions are now being asked about lack of transparency in the functioning of Satya Sai Central Trust.

Questions are also being raised as to why the relatives of Satya Sai, except Ratnakar, were not allowed inside the building.

Even Baba’s grand niece Chittemma had been kept in the dark about the unlocking of Baba’s residence. Though the trust appeals to people not to have any misgivings on the Yajurveda Mandiram, its way of functioning gives rise to the same suspicions and misconceptions.

In the words of PN Bhagwati, trust board member and former chief justice of India, the reopening of the Mandiram in the presence of all trust members is justified and can be considered transparent as per the constitution.

ANANTAPUR: Sri Satya Saibaba’s dream project `Vidya Vahini’ aimed at providing quality education to rural children was launched in Chandranagar in Nandigama mandal in Krishna district on Friday.

The project, to which industrialist Ratan Tata came forward to fund, was announced by Saibaba on his birthday last year, for improving rural education.

The project was formally launched by Vidya Vahini state incharge PRK Prasad, in the school run by Saibaba devotee Tirupathaiah, in Chandranagar.

Meanwhile, Ratan Tata, came to Puttaparthy by a special helicopter on Friday afternoon. He drove straight to Santhi Bhavan and later had the darshan of Baba’s Mahasamadhi at Sai Kulwant hall.

Before leaving Puttaparthy, Ratan went to Yajur mandir where he spent some time with the trust members.

Several eyebrows were raised over Ratan Tata visiting Yajur mandir while counting of currency and gold ornaments was on.

It may noted that the trust member Ratnakar declared the details of the cash, gold and silver ornaments in the Yajur mandir, just after Ratan Tata left.

Several questions have been raised whether Ratan Tata’s visit to Yajur mandir now is accidental or preplanned.

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

General

Excerpt From Public Petition (and introduction)

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

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Reports of Sathya Sai Central Trust Van Laden With Treasure Seized By Andhra State Police

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 19, 2011

FLASH

This story seems only broken as yet via the India Today television news channel.

Overnight (Australian Eastern Standard Time), a usually reliable source of ours with Andhra Pradesh-related police sources reported that Andhra Pradesh State Police have intercepted a Sathya Sai Central Trust van heavily laden with treasure, and arrested three. It seems that the driver has confessed to being  an employee of the Trust. 

Key words noted in the India Today news segment include:

 “Puttaparthi cash haul”……. ” huge cash seized from Sai Baba trust van”………. “Sathya Sai Trust van intercepted and huge cash haul in bags” ……” Van and occupants arrested in Kodikonda checkpost in Ananthapur” ……. “driver confesses being Sathya Sai trust van driver coming from Puttaparthi”…….. “cash seized being held on the spot” ……currency counting machines being rushed to the spot”

Interesting Earlier Sathya Sai Central Trust Statements

This date of this Megamedia News article coincides with the day of Sai Baba’s death:  Sai Baba’s wealth in distress now. 3:22 PM, Monday, April 25th, 2011. But, as reported in an Economic Times article:  ‘Baba had no successor in mind: Trustees, election for Sai Trust chairman next week’, Apr 28, 2011, 09.53pm IST, a prominent spokesman for Trustees and the Council of ManagementVenu Srinivasan stated:

“In the light of baseless, irresponsible and false accusations of defalcation of gold, valuable artefacts and even money, it is emphatically stated that the accusations are wholly untrue and it is believed these have been engineered by certain vested interests”. (Economic Times article:  ‘Baba had no successor in mind: Trustees, election for Sai Trust chairman next week’, Apr 28, 2011, 09.53pm IST).

In a very long Press Release by The Trustees and the Council of Management of Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust on April 28, 2011 (four days after Sai Baba’s death), it is stated:

18. In light of the baseless, irresponsible and false accusations of defalcation of gold, valuable artefacts and even money, it is emphatically stated that these accusations are wholly untrue and it is believed that these have been engineered by certain vested interests with a view to defame the fair name of the Trust, its functionaries and the Trustees. There is no truth whatsoever in these allegations.

19. All transactions of the Trusts are duly accounted in their books of account. An experienced and qualified chartered accountant oversees the accounting and financial management. The accounts are duly audited by a reputed firm of Chartered Accountants based at Delhi. Periodical returns, accounts and audit reports as prescribed by law are duly filed with the concerned authorities under the Income Tax Act, FCRA and other applicable statutes. There is no proceeding initiated against any of the Trusts by any authority under any statute alleging any impropriety or violation of law.”

But who can possibly believe them?

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An old article of mine springs into relevance: 

Sai Baba, Kubla Khan, Citizen Kane, Bill Gates et alia

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 7, 2007

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See next article to follow the above – to be front paged tomorrow: 

After Decades of Dormancy, Some Indian Media Now Question Sathya Sai Baba

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The Telegraph. Calcutta

Open sesame! Baba & his chamber of secrets
G.S. RADHAKRISHNA
From the Telegraph, Calcutta article “Open Sesame! Baba and his chamber of secrets”


June 17: Nike and Adidas sneakers. Whole cupboards of perfume and hairspray. Packets full of — and gold crowns studded with — diamonds.

Total worth Rs 35 crore and counting.

The world knew that Sai Baba lived in a cocoon of riches. Only since yesterday has it seen for itself.

Around 8.30 on Thursday morning, the doors were thrown open at Yajur Mandir, the late spiritual leader’s two-storey living quarters at the centre of his Puttaparthi ashram that had been out of bounds for almost everyone for the past 25 years.

A team of chartered accountants, income-tax and bank officials, and members of the Sathya Sai Central Trust walked into the half-dozen rooms to which only Satyajit, the monk’s personal attendant for the past 20 years, had so far had access.

What they found, after Satyajit negotiated the combination locks and biometric security, left everyone staggered, ashram sources said.

If the Rs 11.5 crore in currency notes stashed in cabinets were a surprise, hardly anyone had expected separate almirahs for hair spray and expensive shoes, for dry fruits and biscuits. (See chart)

Thirty-six hours on, the bank officials and student volunteers from the Sathya Sai Educational Institute had just finished counting the cash, aided by three machines from the State Bank of India (SBI). The inventory of jewellery and stones was still incomplete late tonight.

“There are numerous cloth packets with diamonds, whose number and value has not yet been assessed. They and most other valuables will be shifted to the vaults of the SBI’s Puttaparthi branch,” said a trust member.

Some of the gold, silver and personal belongings will stay on at Yajur Mandir, which will be converted into a museum for the monk, who is believed to have left behind assets of Rs 40,000 crore to Rs 1.5 lakh crore.

Only a handful of VIP visitors had ever been inside the building, and even they would have seen only the outer chamber where the Sai Baba received them.

The complex was locked immediately after the monk was admitted to hospital on March 28, four weeks before he died on April 24. Even yesterday and today, nobody other than the official team was allowed in. Nobody except one unexpected visitor.

Tata visit

If the riches were a surprise, a second surprise greeted the ashram authorities this morning. Industrialist Ratan Tata, a Sai Baba devotee, arrived unannounced at the Prashanti Nilayam.

Tata flew into Bangalore by a chartered plane and drove in a Mercedes to Puttaparthi, 435km from Hyderabad. He was allowed to enter Yajur Mandir as a special case and spent 45 minutes there.

“He was searching for something he wanted to check. We don’t know what he was looking for and whether he found it, but he did not take anything,” one of the trustees said.

A Sai Institute student who was there said: “Our trust member Ratnakar Raju (a nephew of Sai Baba) spent about 15 minutes with Tata discussing something.”

Tata left Puttaparthi in the evening.

Related Readings

Sathya Sai Baba Buried Treasure: Media and Government Need To Probe Sai Central Trust

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 18, 2011

‘Secret Swami’ (Late) Sai Baba: Vast Millions In Hoard Found Hidden In His Palace-Temple

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 18, 2011

Sathya Sai Baba’s Residence Unlocked. Vast Treasury Uncovered

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 17, 2011

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

General

Excerpt From Public Petition (and introduction)

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

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