Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Posts Tagged ‘India Today’

Indian Media and Governments Heedless of Decade of Foreign Media and Sai Baba Critics’ Revelations

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 27, 2011

Each day, major sections of the Indian media feature glaring revelations about Sathya Sai Baba’s and key Sathya Sai Central Trust officials. The Andhra Pradesh government is now stepping in – for example, closing down 16 charitable exemptions long accorded to the Sathya Sai Central Trust. It details to the case police investigators with teeth, and arrests have already been made.

There are grave suspicions surrounding the manner of Sai Baba’s death. For example, questions have been raised about why the Indian and international doctors attending Sai Baba since his hospitalization were refused salient details about medical treatment prior to this time. News reports in recent days – such as the surprise emergence of billionaire Sai Baba backer Isaac Tigrett and his secret yet to be revealed – have heavily eclipsed these matters.  See: Human Rights Commission Probe Fronts Andhra Government On Sathya Sai Baba Treatment

Several of Sathya Sai Baba’s longtime most prominent workers have resigned, including Dr A.N. Safaya, head of the Superspecialty Hospital at Puttaparthi, along with other doctors and nursing staff.  See:  Head of Sai Baba Mega Dollar Hospital At Puttaparthi Resigns. Others Quitting Jobs Too. Posted by Barry Pittard on June 26, 2011.

Dereliction of Duty of Care, Accountability and Transparency of International Sathya Sai Organization and Sathya Sai Central Trust

Sai Baba cult's world head, Dr Micael Goldstein, of Covena, southern California. BBC secret camera captures the ugly face that the international leadership of the Sathya Sai Organization wishes to hide.

For many years, small numbers of internationally coordinated former devotees, and other critics such as the late Basava Premanand, worked tremendously hard, and against almost impossible odds, to expose Sathya Sai Baba and his authoritarian worldwide cult. See:

Basava Premanand. Vale. A fighter for truth who lived what others preach

In Memoriam – Glen Meloy (“Standing up for truth and goodness”

The Sathya Sai Organization now bears the undying stigma of having countless times scorned, rebuked and libeled those former devotees and other critics who have, at cost of great personal sacrifice to themselves and their families and friends, spoken out about the sexual abuses against young males and other crimes and moral and spiritual betrayals.

Longtime Failure to Act of Indian Media and Successive National and State Governments

To the profound shame of the Indian media, leading newspaper and television organizations heeded our representations:

For example, BBC, CBC (Canada), DR (Denmark), Salon.com (USA), SBS (all television), ABC (Radio Australia). In newspaper media – Times of London, Daily Telegraph, Guardian (UK), Marie Claire Magazine, Salon.com, BT, Bild, Focus, Trouw, Speegelbield, Noordhollands Dagblad, Sokaren, Gatopardo, Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Star, Vancouver Sun, Age, Australian Financial Review, West Australian (a major front page article by an award-winning journalist (Torrance Mendez) was pulled at the 11th hour!), Adelaide Advertiser, etc., ….. It was not until a close friend of ours, at the top of a notable profession, was able to dine with an official of the Indo Asian News Service that our Duke of Edinburgh story concerning Sai Baba’s propaganda people that we were able, after many futile attempts, to make some inroads on a small section of the Indian media.

Extraordinarily, in the last days, wide sections of the Indian media are surfacing evidence that powerfully tells against Sathya Sai Baba and many of his core servitors. It is, of course, to the historic shame of the Indian media (with the honorable exception of India Today) and successive, typically corrupt Indian governments, national and state, that we long remained voices crying out in the wilderness. For my appreciation of India Today’s publisher Aroon Purie and his team, see:  Sai Baba Treasure Scandals: His Big Political Protectors Now Run For Cover

Of course, the greatest crying, emotionally and spiritually speaking, came from the countless boys and young men who had been sexually molested by Sathya Sai Baba, and in some cases by his teachers. For a recent record of a former student of the Sathya Sai university, now a professional who still struggles with terrible guilt, see:

Testimony about Sai Baba and his Hostels for Boys

Posted by robertpriddy on June 9, 2011

More glimpses behind Sai Baba’s veil of secrecy from one who knows

Posted by robertpriddy on June 10, 2011

The crying comes also from those he and certain of his servitors badly damaged in various other ways. including complicity in cover up of police executions in Sai Baba’s bedroom, missing persons, the beating of individuals by key Sai Baba security personnel, terrible financial scams conducted through the Puttaparthi front office, and in many other ways.

From years of living in India, and sometimes with families from very wealthy to very poor, I know that Indians love their children as people anywhere else do. Of course they do. But love operates when it is a verb, an action, rather than when it is a noun, an abstract.

However, the indisputable fact is that, far worse than in countries which have made large strides in facing sexual abuse issues, India profoundly betrays her children in this regard.

Will India continue to maintain the profoundly inhumane taboo against confronting issues around sexual abuse? Will she focus, instead, on scandals such as the secret hoarding in Sathya Sai Baba’s private chambers of millions of dollars worth of currency and large caches of precious stones and other luxury items? Will she not ask what, sexually, in the lives of so many boys and young men, happened down many years in Sai Baba’s bedroom? That is, the same bedroom around which a vast fortune in currency, gold, silver and precious gemstones have now been found. And the selfsame bed in which the treasury of innocence of countless boys and young men has been forever snatched.

Do you, India, wish to leave out forever out in the wilderness those brave Indian advocates for child protection as: Maharukh Adenwala, Rajmangal Prasad, and other national, state and local profiled figures who work for child rights in India. Why don’t you begin to hang out with those who really care, instead of those who only pretend to care?

Do you, India, wish to continue to be known throughout the world as the country with the highest rate of violence against women and children. Do you want a nation in which, according to a survey by India Today, there are between 400000 and 500000 child prostitutes in India. Does it not mean something to you that a 2007 study (brought about only by the tireless efforts of Indian men and women who truly care, by the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) found that 53.22 per cent of India’s children have experienced some form of sexual abuse.

Do many of you pass it all off, thinking it is the kids’ Karma? Very well, do you think it is your Karma to be a person who doesn’t care, and who is content to leave matters as they are? Would you want your own children in the clutches of predators?  Do you have no voice? No ability to support those who work, back against the wall, for change?

By virtue of former devotees’ intensive coordinated campaigning, Sathya Sai Baba centers in the West have emptied and, in other cases, been sorely depleted.  A difficult sticking point is that India is a long way behind in addressing sexual abuse issues. It will be ironic if India’s Sathya Sai Centers empty or deplete because of the revelations about Sai Baba’s material, rather than spiritual treasure. The case in countries outside India was quite other – it was primarily because many individuals were able to exchange their findings about the sheer extent of Sai Baba’s sexual abuses of boys and young men that the credibility of the Sathya Sai Baba was irrecoverably damaged.

After enormous efforts by former Sai Baba devotees around the world – efforts that included proper, professional presentation of our credentials and of primary and secondary witnesses to governments, the United Nations, Interpol, and also of notable institutions which then, thankfully, cut off their connection with the international Sathya Sai Organization.

Robert Priddy and I, with additional help from within India, are keeping up the pressure in our own way. Various leading Indian media have contacted. Our blogsites are receiving thousands of visitors. Though naturally we are keen to avoid any imputation of interfering in the affairs of a sovereign country. We are most sensitive to the need not to tread on the turf of our Indian brothers and sisters who are staging the fight on their home ground. One area we have sometimes been able to assist is in bringing pressure on India deeply corrupt governments via the representatives of former devotees and other Sai Baba critics from around the world. Our friends among Non-Resident Indians (NRI’s) have also been able to contribute here.

My guess is that, just as in the first great wave of our exposure effort, many quit the Sathya Sai Organization, there will now be more waves of leave-taking. Indeed, one would think, of far greater dimensions.

A Seminal Document (August 2000) by Hari Sampath, Former Member of Sathya Sai Security and Intelligence Wing. Indian Media Should Study It

An all-too-neglected Hari Sampath document from 21 August 2000, fully deserves to be widely read, including by an Indian media which may be prone to think themselves as being at the cutting edge of  exposing Sathya Sai Baba and core elements of his cult. The Sampath document is entitled – ‘The Sathya Sai Baba set-up: How it works’.

Hari Sampath wrote his piece from the point of view of a member of Sai Baba Security and Intelligence wing who had become alienated by his discoveries of corruption from Sai Baba down. He  began to investigate, and later posted some of his findings on the internet. See HERE.

From both my own repeated, direct experience of contact with it, and that of our Indian workers’ extraordinarily hard work to inform it, a fact stands out inescapably:  Had the Indian media had been professional and receptive when we embarked on our saga of exposure, Sai cult exposure of the sort happening in India today would surely have happened long ago.

In short, the Indian media, except India Today, was sorely derelict in failing to heed our evidence both in regard to the large-scale serial sexual abuses, and to the financial criminality and corruption which Hari Sampath was the first to reveal publicly.

One area of feedback that would be useful to have at this time is:  impact on centers, both within and outside India. Many of you have your own networking and other resources by which to pull in salient information about what is happening with the centers. Please keep this and other forms of information coming. The feedback assists in breaking through the walls of disinformation and, more often, of Sai Organization unaccountability mediated via silence. See:

Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard On Dr G. Venkataraman – Sathya Sai Baba Global Propagandist

There are many lessons that nations can draw from exposures as great as the unmasking of the Sathya Sai Baba cult. The story of its exposure has on of small people having to learn skills which they, almost entirely never previously possessed. Such as dealing with the media, lawyers, and acting as a conduit to various professional areas of support – such as experienced psychological counseling – for the terribly stricken survivors of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult’s abuses. Anyone in the communities of former devotee activists are witness to the fact that these individuals are not takers but givers. Very typically, they serve not only those affected by the Sathya Sai Organization’s utter dereliction of duty of care and accountability, but also are dedicated to serving worthy causes in their own wider communities and professions.

In short, these are the individuals so-called Sai Baba devotees around the world – so full of their earnest talk about truth, righteousness, peace, love and non-violence – have so cruelly and wrongfully shunned, scorned and vilified.

It is important to keep the information flowing.

For those with information, I can be contacted at this blogsite. Or via:  barpittard@gmail.com. Where special security/confidentiality needs may be called for, there are protocols available. My colleague Robert Priddy and I have dealt with many international situations involving private individuals, media, government and institutions, and confidentiality is assured.

It may be that some fear going to various agencies in the Indian state or federal police. A former head of Interpol in Australia has assured me that there are workarounds in situations of this kind. Should anyone in India wish to share this level of information, please feel welcome to write to me.

Barry Pittard, former Lecturer, Sathya Sai College, Whitefield, via Bangalore, South India.

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Excerpt from:

Testimony from ‘Raman Sharma’

Date: 05-09-11

Here is an excerpt from an account made by a former student – now an academic – who has been in regular contact with well known ex-follower Conny Larsson by phone and e-mail and with an other ex devotee, for several years. We know his real identity and can confirm that he is a real person, but we must protect him from aggressive Sai stalkers and continued harassment by fanatical Sai Baba devotees where he is in India:

I have been accused from the “people of the 5 Human Values” of all sort of things and foremost even threatened for my life. These stalkers who have been paid by the Sai organisation. are terrible people who were also my former close friends within the Sai organisation. But what more could one expect from people devoted to a Rakshasa like Sai Baba. He once said to me after I told him that I loved him; “Yes I know, my food is your thoughts”. I almost fainted out of satisfaction, could you believe how gullible I was. Seduced both physically, spiritually and mentally. The so called “seva” within his organisation is just a mumbo jumbo that never existed so far.

I am really at pains to understand that one of my closest friends (name given but undisclosed here), who personally told me about the private goings on is still a believer, though I sympathize with him. It can be due to the fact that his father was given free hospital treatment and I believe he has received other benefits . There was also (name undisclosed). They are still my friends and so it is difficult to come out in the open.

(‘Raman Sharma’ tells next of how a close relative of his was a prominent official in the Sathya Sai Organisation but left after he told her of his experiences. They were ostracized by all former Sai Baba friends and none bothered to ask after his relative’s health after a cancer operation. After I came out my mother left the organisation and many senior member spoke ill about us.) I also had a miraculous escape in a way when I had confronted the hostel warden directly (it’s a long story of my own humiliations and shady living and things to which I was introduced as a kid in my eight standard by older boys and close friends). I still recollect another Mephistopheles of SB, Nanjundaiaah, the controller of examinations at the university speaking to our class that “Swami is pure innocence, you students by your association and dirty thoughts are spoiling him and his innocence” referring to the talk that was spreading at the college.

They misbehaved with students whenever rumours or truth about SSB started spreading in the hostel. Earlier SSB use to himself do this job by publicly humiliating those students and expelling them, thereby spoiling their careers. How many days of psychological trauma and torture good students have suffered! If I remember correctly, it was in June 2000 during the summer course (or was it 1999) two Brindavan form boys (who slept with SB) were taken ill. When checked, they were found to be HIV positive. I don’t know what happened to them, but SB was very upset with them and threw them out. I think this information was totally suppressed. In India the atmosphere is such that even people like us who know facts doubts ourselves at times. I do hope and pray that God does not allow India to be a global superpower, otherwise it has everything in it to corrupt the rest of the world. The famous author Nirad C Chaudhuri used a term MEGALOMANIA (In his own words he explained that just as an individual can be overtaken by madness, entire groups of people can grow mad). In India we have no dearth of politicians going collectively mad and so also credulous people in general. At least Nehru, for all his shortcomings never bowed down to irrationality just as his party supremos like PM Manmohan Singh  and Sonia Gandhi did recently by Bowing down at the corpse of dead Sathya sai Baba.

Yesterday, I was going through the exbaba site and the account of SB’s sibling Janakiramiah’s death. I noticed two points: Firstly, While Janakiramiah lay dying, people were allowed to see him in the ICU at SSSIHMS. I really fail to understand why are the devotees not being allowed now. Secondly, there was a reference of a bloated Janakiramaiah’s body being sent back to his residence at Parthi. I would like to bring to your notice about another death at the hospital. It concerns prof. Kailash Kumar Aurora, one of the professors’ of English at the Institute. I heard about his death when I had gone to parthi last in 2004. He also died at SSSIHMS and some students who saw him (may be at the hospital) repeatedly confirmed that his body had bloated up unnaturally. I do know of the fact that many permanent members at the ashram or even students never wanted to go to SSSIHMS for treatment because the Hospital was famous for giving wrong injections or medications to the patients. I personally hold the view that SB knew of these goings-on at the hospital and never wanted any major achievement of the hospital to be highlighted in public. Also, returning to the sequence of my older emails, somewhere around 1990 there was a student called Ramesh from Andhra who use to terrorize me and have sex. He never allowed me to go to class and I was really afraid of him, I don’t know for what, I think most of them knew of SB and I am surprised that even on Facebook none of the old Sai students are showing any serious concern about swami’s health. I think it was in my tenth that I started enjoying sex with males after being forced to do it in eighth and ninth. I even stopped going home during holidays in the pretext of staying with swami and my parents being devotees could not imagine about what was happening to me. I remember praying to SB that my parents should die so that I could enjoy life on my own, such was my foolishness. These memories are indeed painful, but I can certainly say that I have restrained myself from doing it with younger folks at Parthi. Somehow I always had the feeling that it was wrong.

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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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Sathya Sai Baba Student Communications On Sex Abuse

Posted by Barry Pittard on January 10, 2010

As a Sathya Sai Baba Exposé colleague of Robert Priddy, former head of the Sathya Sai Organization in Norway, and retired academic philosopher of the University of Oslo and former researcher in social science at the Institute for Social Research, Oslo, I endorse his comment, below, which he has just noted in his frequently updated blog: Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed (Exposing major deceits by guru Sathya Sai Baba in India, incl. murders cover-up …). His extensive, highly-organized website is: http://www.saibaba-x.org.uk . The site notes that it “showcases the views of a group of former Sathya Sai Organisation members (ex-devotees) with full rights to expose the organisation that deceived them”.

As always, I too (as do other former devotees from a wide array of social, cultural and professional backgrounds) stand ready to so testify in any proper court of law and also in regard to respected media, as has been the case with testimonies by many former devotees from around the world. For example: BBC, CBC, ABC, DR, SBS, The Times of London, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, India Today, Salon.com, Gatopardo, The Age, Financial Times (Australia), West Australian, Vancouver Sun, The Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Star, BT, Trouw, Spiegelbeeld, Noordhollands Dagblad, Focus, BILD …

See: Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List

Organized former devotees have also submitted much evidence at high levels of UNESCO. See:

The Case of UNESCO’s Missing Media Advisory

BBC Caught UNESCO Head Bowing To Indian Government

I may add that those former devotees who have spoken out over the years have often done so despite major disruption to their lives, and in the face of almost unimaginable personal attack, libel and disinformation Sathya Sai Baba forces. This includes studied misinformation given by leaders to rank-and-file members of the international Sathya Sai Organization. The cost in time and effort has been formidable, but has been appropriate in the face of – indisputably – one of the most profound religious duplicities and cover ups in history.

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More student communications on Sai Baba sex abuse

Posted by robertpriddy on January 9, 2010 

Posted in New Age, Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

‘Spiritual’ Politicking Sathya Sai Baba Style. An India-UK Nexus

Posted by Barry Pittard on November 5, 2009

After our urgent, coordinated actions, the British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie were – indeed within minutes – prevented from visiting Sai Baba  at Whitefield near Bangalore. They were about ten minute’s drive away from his ashram when, heeding our representations, British High Commission officials were able to dissuade Blair and his wife from visiting Sathya Sai Baba.

Tony Blair and Sathya Sai Baba: The Meeting That Was Averted With Minutes To Spare

A photo call, with results expected to be flashed round the world, was thus averted. The Blair visit to Bangalore occurred at an historic watershed period for the Sathya Sai Baba movement.  He and his global sect was under tremendous scrutiny – very difficult for a group whose top officials act with considerable secrecy and suppression.

In the British House of Commons, questions about Sathya Sai Baba were raised  (November 2000).  This was maintained in early 2002:

‘Sai Baba and sexual abuse of children’ no. 886
That this House, mindful of the many accounts and witness statements of the sexual abuse of the male children of devotees by the Indian guru, Sai Baba, calls upon the Foreign Secretary to use the Travel Advice for India page of the Foreign Office Website to issue guidance to British families intending to visit the Ashram of Sai Baba about the possible danger to their male children of individual audiences with the guru.
Source: UK Parliament, 26.02.02 House of Commons

Major, researched stories appeared in India Today (October 2000), Daily Telegraph (December 2000), and Times of London (August 2001).

Internal crises erupted within the Sathya Sai Organization. In Sathya Sai centers in various parts of the world, members discovered among their own local memberships terrible evidence from respected, longtime members that all was far from well. Some centers disbanded altogether. Increasing attention focused on many accounts of Sai Baba’s sexual abuses of boys and young men, implication in the ashram, local, state and central government cover up of killings in his bedroom, and other monumental spiritual betrayals. Many of its members left the Sathya Sai Organisation, including some of its most respected leaders. See:

Truth In Action: David and Faye Bailey Vs Sathya Sai Baba

‘BILD’ Story. “Guru Wants Sex” (Sathya Sai Baba)

Sathya Sai Baba Organization’s Betrayal of Love and Compassion (Terry Gallagher case – Gallagher investigated extensively, and resigned as leader of the Sathya Sai Organization, Australia)

Sathya Sai Baba Critic Serguei Badaev: An Incisive Voice of Conscience From Russia

David Bailey and Thomas Wiehe. Transcript Of Phone Link: Sathya Sai Abuses

Letter from Stephen Carthew (the case of Stephen Carthew, a South Australian leader, who likewise advocated democratic norms of discussion), and was axed by the now retired head of the Australian Sathya Sai Organization, Sri T.Ramananathan)

Alaya Rahm’s Lawsuit vs Sathya Sai Society of AmericaJoint Statement by the International JuST Group and the Rahm family (Al Rahm was one of the foremost of top leaders in the SS Org.) and:

Al Rahm’s explanatory letter and:

Alaya Rahm’s Lawsuit vs Sathya Sai Society of America

Story of My Disqualification (Serguei Badaev case. Badaev, Russia’s most outstanding SS Org. leader was insufferably shoved by Sathya Sai Baba’s top axemen. Why? He wanted open and properly convened canons of enquiry)

Searing true testimony about Sathya Sai Baba abuse (the case of Hans de Kraker, Australia, who was for a number of years in charge of the Western Canteen at Puttaparthi)

Dr Naresh Bhatia. Silenced Now In Indian Child Abuse Scourge

Some prominent ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba

Smear Campaign against critics of Sathya Sai Baba

‘Spiritual’ Politicking Sathya Sai Style

There was a concerted plan to bring Sathya Sai Baba to the attention of the world. From various sources we were able to piece together information about some of the survival strategies of Sathya Sai Baba and his core, high-level servitors. for example, we learnt that his top leaders in India and the UK, along with the Indian and British governments (most notably the Foreign and Commonwealth Office), planned as follows:

  • To ensure a meeting between Hon. Tony Blair MP and Sathya Sai Baba during the British Prime Minister’s Bangalore visit in the first week of January 2002
  • To ensure that a bevy of Indian and UK journalists asked him and his wife questions about his experiences of Sathya Sai Baba
  • To get the then Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, a publicly professed devotee of Sai Baba, to speak to Blair personally about Sai Baba, which he did at Chequers on November 12, 2001 when he visited the UK.
  • To obtain Vajpayee’s signature to a pre-written letter vociferously defending Sai Baba, co-signed by then Chief Justice of India, P.N. Bhagawati, former Chief Justice Ranganath Mishra, at that time Chairperson, National Human Rights Commission of India, and Dr Najma Heptulla, former President of the Inter-Parliamentary Union Council, former Speaker Lok Sabha, and Union Minister. See:

Open Letter to Prime Minister of India, Hon. A.B. Vajpayee. By Barry Pittard, Australia, former Lecturer, Sri Sathya Sai College of the Arts, Science and Commerce, Whitefield, via Banglalore, Karnataka

  • To publicise this letter, for example on the UK Sathya Sai Organisation’s website (it was later taken off)
  • To get Tony Blair, via direct personal pressure from former Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee, to curb British parliamentary efforts critical of Sathya Sai Baba.

Further Resources

Dissent From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment
Demonization of Dissenters
:
Evidence of an Internet Activist in Action
See On Disinformation and Internet Vandalism
Bias against Sai critics – article by author Kevin R.D. Shepherd

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General

Barry Pittard’s comments in regard to the Public Petition) -:

Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 10, 2009

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

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA  ”>INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL)

Posted in Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

‘BILD’ Story. “Guru Wants Sex” (Sathya Sai Baba)

Posted by Barry Pittard on September 13, 2009

The article quoted below, in which Jens Sethi , a former devotee, recounts being sexually abused by Sathya Sai Baba, is from the magazine ‘BILD’ of Munich on 21 August, 2000. Wikipedia states that ‘BILD’ is “the best-selling newspaper in Europe and has the sixth-largest circulation worldwide”.

About a year earlier, NEXUS Magazine (Australia), August-September 1999, featured three articles on Sathya Sai Baba, containing serious allegations. One of these was the testimony of a German husband and wife, Jens and Gurprit Sethi who had been devotees, but had left him.The other articles were the testimony of Terry Gallagher (who, on principle, had resigned as head of the Sathya Sai Organization in Australia) and Hans de Kraker, also Australia, who had reported his own experiences of Sathya Sai Baba sexual abuse, and had likewise resigned his roles having further investigated allegations of Sathya Sai Baba’s serial sexual abuse of boys and young men. Kraker was, for a number of years, head of the Western Canteen at Puttaparthi, See here) . Kraker’s account can be seen at:

A searing testimonial about Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by robertpriddy on August 30, 2009.

Until the NEXUS article, mentioned below, I had dismissed for many years as absurd no fewer than nine accounts of sexual abuse by Sai Baba, five of which I had heard between 1978 and 1982, and two shortly before I read the NEXUS articles, the rest between 1997 and 2000. I must say, though, it was a relief when leading sources such as India Today, The BBC, UNESCO, The Times of London, The Telegraph, The Guardian, BT, The Age, The Australian Financial Times, Vancouver Sun, Ottawa Citizen Gatopado , UNESCO, some academic institutions such as Flinders University, Australia and others, not known for sensationalism, took our team and witnesses seriously. Even the like of these have been attacked by an unscrupulous zealot who is known to be assisted by those long and strongly associated with Sathya Sai Baba. See: Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 23, 2007Sethi-Munich

BILD (Wolfgang Ranft) interview on Sathya Sai Baba

Translation of text:-

RESIDENT FROM MUNICH RAN AWAY FROM INDIA –  GURU ALL OF A SUDDEN WANTS SEX

By Wolfgang Ranft

MUNICH – Jens Sethi was young, naive, full of religious expectations. In 1988 this resident from Munich who worked that time in a printing office travelled to India the land of the Hindu Gurus. The 24-year-old man was looking for new spiritual fulfillment. He found, what he was looking for. Sethi succumbed to the fascination of a Guru who was already 62-years old that time: Sathya Sai Baba. “I was totally fascinated by the Aura of Sai Baba”, he says today. “I surrendered in a way that I was mainly concentrating on him.” Every year he travelled together with his wife for four or six weeks to the Ashram of Sai Baba. During the festival time more than 20 000 devotees gather there.

The fascination remained for Sethi just an external moment as he never could approach the Guru during the first years. This happened only in October 1996 when Sethi finally decided to go to India where he settled down in Puttaparthi close to the Ashram. During the daily pilgrim-meeting he was called for an interview by the Guru, the utmost a pilgrim can expect within the Ashram. Sethi enjoyed his good luck. He, one of those rare devotees, who has been personally selected by the Guru.

But the conversation took a different course than he expected. Sethi appeared together with his wife. The Guru was outraged and has sent the woman away. Alone in the room the old man started to kiss the man from Munich, stroke him and went into the trousers. Shocked but still full of faith and naivety Sethi accepted two other meetings some month later. Again the Guru kissed him and finally touched his genitals.

Only then the young man ran away back to Germany. It took him three years to overcome the crisis and to separate himself mentally from his spiritual guide. During that time he did investigations in the internet and came to know about other young men from UK, Sweden, USA who underwent a fate of similar experiences.

Only this summer he did the final step to escape from the spell under the Guru: He brought a charge against Sathya Sai Baba at the public prosecutor´s office in Munich – because of sexual molestation.

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Related References

In its cover story on the allegations, the mass distribution, multi language edition magazine ‘India Today’ (4 December 2000) stated:

“In Australia too, The Sunday Age carried an article on Baba’s sexual abuse. In Munich, Germany, Jens Sethi, a former devotee who claims he was molested, has filed a complaint in the public prosecutor’s office. In Sweden, the central Sai group has closed down and so too has a school based on programmes devised by educationists at the Baba ashram in Puttaparthi …

JENS SETHI is a German settled in Munich. He was a Sai Baba devotee for 10 years. His charges were published for the first time by the Focus magazine on September 18.

Allegations (as sent in a signed affidavit to INDIA TODAY): “In the private chamber, Baba said ‘Come,’ and kissed me on my lips for a long time. I resisted and he gurgled, ‘Have no fear. This is a good opportunity, so many are waiting for months and will not get.’ He asked me to remove my trousers, unzipped my fly and went with his right hand into my underpants. Baba massaged the genitals unasked. He expected some erection but this did not happen for I didn’t feel any sexual excitement. I also didn’t come for such games to Puttaparthi. I was really disgusted. Baba was disappointed and had the impudence to say, ‘It is very weak, don’t waste energy.’ When I looked at him, I realised the truth about him. He had such an evil vibration that moment. Soon, he sent me out of the room without saying a word.”

STATUS: Sethi recently filed a complaint with the public prosecutor in Munich. The Sai Baba Ashram has no comment on the allegations”.

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General

Excerpt From Public Petition (With Barry Pittard’s comments)

(Note: You may prefer to proceed straight to the Petition):

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

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL)


Posted in Morality, Opinion, Protest, Religion, Sai Baba, Scandal, Sex, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

Sathya Sai Baba Sect: A Crisis of Trust

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 5, 2009

One of the distinctive phenomena that independently confirm voices critical of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult is that his movement is eroding from within.

A glance at each of these older articles in conjunction with the other highlights two important facts:

Quote from: Sathya Sai Baba World Cult At Odds With Itself

“Some of his followers have made progress in thinking their way out of this particular variety of ‘the guru trap’. They do not have to ask whether those who have spoken out (often after many decades as deeply dedicated service workers in his movement) are a tiny handful of disgruntled or money-oriented individuals or “demons” and “Judases” that Sathya Sai Baba and certain of his devotees have branded us as being. Rather, in waking up to the seriousness of the revelations, they discover rude awakenings enough in their own saddened localities”.

Quote from: ‘Secret Swami’ Cult Recruits At Prime Public Venues

“This zeal to recruit (to use the proper word) tends to take place in exceptionally prestigious venues. What does the global Sathya Sai Baba cult  need for its survival – given over a decade of unrelenting exposure? It needs to provide for the stupendously expensive upkeep and maintenance of its costly and sumptuous buildings and various programs that glorify Sathya Sai Baba as God of Gods. See (including photos of the imperial lavishness with which Sathya Sai Baba surrounds himself): Sai Baba, Kubla Khan, Citizen Kane, Bill Gates et alia and India’s ‘Emperor’ Sai Baba. By His Lavish Spending Ye Shall Know Him

But the wherewithal is not likely to proceed from his ever-circling ‘miraculous’ hand. Survival decrees that it is the left and cunning hand that needs to be in operation, and fast”.

Video Resources

The Secret Swami (BBC Television):
(154 MB, Broadband)

Further Resources

Seduced (DR, Danish Broadcasting, Denmark’s national television and radio broadcaster):
(80 MB, Broadband)

http://home.hetnet.nl/~seduced/seduced.wmv
(21 MB, Modem)

Further Resources

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

(PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL)

Posted in Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

When Indian Media Coat Tails Foreign Media. Did Freedom Happen?

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 13, 2009

Leaving aside, of course, the occasional exception like the mass circulation magazine India Today, when it acted on submissions from networked former devotees in a number of countries, we have not had much joy from the Indian media.  See: 

Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List 

A further breakthrough of sorts occurred when the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) likewise took seriously our work in regard to the Duke of Edinburgh Awards-Sathya Sai Baba connection.  See:

A Duke Stops An Emperor. Edinburgh Routs Sai Baba

Would that IANS had been on the scene when the range and penetration of its services might have got more news to India of the BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ (2004). Its own self-perception is that it is: “an independent and integrated media company with no affiliation with any major business house, political or ideological group”. And that it breaks “through the often cliched and stereotyped reporting about India with objective and unbiased news, views and analyses that portray the country, and the region, in a global perspective”.

IANS certainly broke through to many Indian media that had long refused to run with our stories in regard to the Sai Baba cult (whether Indian or international).

Overseas Indians (NRI’s) Can Get News Strongly Suppressed In Indian Media

The situation has long been fraught with irony. We have been able to get so many major quality international media interested in our accounts, while India maintained a steep wall of censorship, so that non-resident Indians (NRI’s) around the world were able to access other points of view about Sathya Sai Baba, and their kindred in India were not .

It scarcely reflects well on an Indian media that only when, for example, a major newspaper like The Guardian ran Paul Lewis’s story The Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards that there was a response. One had thought a modicum of self-respect had been gained as a result of India’s struggle for freedom.

But, then, we know that royalty sells. Just like sex. Perhaps it was simply an unbeatable combination.

The British Empire fell. But will that of Sathya Sai Baba? See:

The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire

A Top Indian Editor Says:  Sai Baba Too Powerful To Take On

Like media barons anywhere, Indian media proprietors frequently have the sharpest eye for sales.  This factor is more pronounced in developing countries like India, where corruption and lack of proper regulation are so rife.   An editor of one of India’s top handful of newspapers, who knew of my work, told me privately that Sathya Sai Baba and his people were far too powerful to do anything about. Indeed, his own newspaper had Sai Baba people in plenteous supply from top to bottom, including a Sai Baba power wielder. Of course, he might just as easily have named not a few other powerfully influential gurus to whom the power brokers of India have so chronically and for so long run. Travel anywhere in India and you find, when you get into frank conversation, that many Indians despair of the grip of these endemic, nepotistic, quite often overtly or covertly caste-ridden power blocs. See:

CNN-IBN Reports Action On Corrupt Indian Gurus

Super Cool Indian Gurus Under Fire

Indian Gurus Stifle India’s Chance To Excel

India A Mature Democracy? BBC Probes

Tony Blair Was to Visit Sai Baba. Blair Canceled

To see how a government in Great Britain, not to mention other countries – in the turning of diplomatic blind eyes – cede to corrupt absurdities within India, see articles below:   

Nonetheless, it was possible for well-wishers of our movement of exposure to get Tony Blair cancel his visit to see Sathya Sai Baba at his Whitefield (near Bangalore). See: 

Flag Follows Trade Abetting Indian Government Corruption

British Labour and Tory Whips Suppressed Motion On Sai Baba

Tony Blair Was to Visit Sai Baba. Plan Thwarted

Ashok Bhagani – Footsying With Top Blair Minister?

 

Posted in News and Politics, Opinion, Religion, Royal Family, Uncategorized, World Issues | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

UK Guardian On Sathya Sai Baba and Duke’s Awards

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 21, 2008

Directly after the November 2006 article in The Guardian (UK), The Indian living god, The paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards by Paul Lewis, an historic Indian media feed seachange started to happen.

The UK Guardian Exposes Indian Guru, Sai Baba

Paul Lewis article in The Guardian (UK) Exposed links with Duke of Edinburgh Awards

There were many successful IANS (Indo-Asian News Service) feeds to Indian media (and a few overseas) which referred to this article, with some added input from IANS Staffer Sudeshna Sarkar who followed up on the story, and filed from London. (See Resources, below).

hrh-the-duke-of-edinburgh.jpg

HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

His Royal Highness’s officials had to act on top of a ‘politically’ not very experienced or competent UK Duke of Edinburgh Awards CEO, Peter Westgarth – see HERE. They were slow off the mark. However, after very high level representations from our side, the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme trustees and Prince Philip’s Private Secretary, Brigadier Sir Miles Hunt-Davies KCVO, CBE,

sir-miles-hunt-davis.jpg

realized that a serious matter was at hand. Questions were also raised by some powerful citizens, including a former Home Minister, Tom Sackville. The Duke of Edinburgh Awards required of Dr G. Venkataraman, head of Sathya Sai Baba’s international propaganda apparatus and deputy world chairman of the Sathya Sai Organization, that an official Sai Baba website take down the triumphant – but absurdly mistaken – information that the Duke of Edinburgh Award had been awarded to Sai Baba himself. Venkataraman complied.

Guardian Article and IANS News Agency Feed Loosen Indian Media Censorship on Sathya Sai Baba

This IANS feed broke decades’-long silence from from an Indian press which (with a rare notable exception such as India Today in December 2000) almost exclusively has censored news adverse to the extraordinarily powerful and influential Sathya Sai Baba. The Telangana separatist issue, in which vast conflicting interests were involved, was the next blow to Sai Baba’s virtual immunity to criticism in the Indian media. He spoke publicly about this hot topic, whereas in years past he has avoided comments concerning political issues. Why, after all, would he want to alienate huge number of followers who have many political suasions? More recently, however, he has been making increasing errors of judgement. See Sathya Sai Baba Continues To Ail

Sathya Sai Baba’s Promise of Moon Darshan Fails

This marked media change was yet again seen in early October 2007 in the wide Indian press coverage of reports that Sathya Sai Baba had promised a great divine miracle, subsequently cancelled when clouds appeared, in which thousands of his devotees gathered at his private airport, creating terrible traffic snarls and potential danger to human life and limb. This immediately followed an announcement in the evening via his close aide and chief translator Professor Anil Kumar, that Sai Baba would miraculously show the universal form of God (or vishwarupa darshanam) in the moon. But both Sai Baba’s own vision AND the moon itself that night were clouded over! (Sai Baba’s gesture, though unfulfilled, is redolent of the type of vision Sri Krishna gave to his chief disciple Arjuna as recorded in the Bhagavad Gita).

Again, it was the upstart news agency IANS which was aggressive in getting its feeds accepted in India.

Significantly:

  • Many NRI’s (non-resident Indians) freely are able to read news and views highly critical of Sai Baba in other countries around the world. A mere glance at the dozens of overseas media that have carried articles adverse to Sathya Sai Baba gives an idea of how exposing it is for Indian media that has normally imposed a heavy blanket on information critical of him
  • New generational influences are arising in Indian media far more inclined to secularism, and that what with the arrival of a rising ‘star’ news agency like IANS, Satha Sai Baba and his semi-feudal, ancien régime servitors and minders now face some tough challenges. New generations of movers and shakers are gradually emerging out of the grip of the gradually fading, but still rife, gerontocracy of the Indian power echelons.

Resources

The Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards

Paul Lewis, UK Guardian. Saturday November 04 2006. Page 3 of the Top section.

Tom Sackville, a former Home Office minister and chairman of Fair, a cult-watching and victim support group, said: “It is appallingly naive for the award scheme to involve young people and the royal family with an organisation whose leader is accused of paedophilia.

‘Parents who plan to send their children on this month’s pilgrimage … should be aware of the danger their children are being exposed to.'”

A Duke Stops An Emperor. Edinburgh Routs Sai Baba

“Officials of The Duke of Edinburgh Awards and Buckingham Palace were upset by the boasting of those such as Dr G. Venkataraman and about the Award connections. (Dr. G. Venkataraman is Sai Baba’s deputy world head, who also directs Sai Baba’s international 7 days 24 hours propaganda satellite radio service via the WorldSpace International corporation. See Shitu Chudasama HERE. Shitu Chudasama is the UK Sai Baba national youth coordinator”.

TRS students wing attack Satya Sai temple over Telangana issue

“While addressing a gathering of devotees at his ashram in Puttaparthi in Anantapur district yesterday, Sai Baba had opposed the division of the state and said overall development was possible only if the state remained united.

The TRS leaders condemned his remarks and demanded his apology for hurting the sentiments of Telangana people”.

Sai Baba To Be Seen In Moon? But Where Was Moon?

“It is interesting that so many devotees have assumed that the vision apparently promised by Sai Baba via his chief translator and close servitor Professor Anil Kumar to many thousands of devotees gathered at his Puttaparthi ashram would entail seeing the form of Sai Baba on the moon. If they had consulted their timeless sacred classic, Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 11, they might have recalled that the vision granted by Sri Krishna to Lord Arjuna (vishwarupa or vishvarupa darshana) was of a very different character. It was not the form of Sri Krishna -who was right beside him! – but a cosmic vision of enormous range and depth”.

Further articles at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com on the moon darshan issue

Sai Baba Fails To Appear In Moon, IANS Reports
‘Moon Mission of Sathya Sai Baba’. Re Merinews Article
Sai Baba Fails To Grant Great Moon Vision. Endangers Crowds
Is Indian ‘Godman’ Sai Baba’s Moon Waning Still Further?
Robert Priddy writes on Moon darshan issue at http://robertpriddy.wordpress.com
Hundreds see Sai Baba on the moon
Sai Baba appearances on the moon
Sai moon miracle again
Sai Baba on the Moon videos
Long-awaited photo of Sai Baba in the moon
Sai Baba on the Moon – photo for his birthday?
Deceiving ‘devotee’ makes bogus image of Sai in the Moon
Oops! Apparently Sai Baba DID appear on the moon?
More Sathya Sai Baba Moon Madness

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Further Resources

The Sathya Sai Organisation’s Deception and Propaganda Exposed – by Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard. Part One Part Two Part Three

Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult (Article on)

Some prominent ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by robertpriddy on June 28, 2009

Witnesses (An alphabetical list linked to testimonies)

Puttaparthi and Misconduct of Sathya Sai Baba’s Officials

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

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA ”INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL

 Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in Miracles, New Age, Religion, Royal Family, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »