Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Posts Tagged ‘Violence’

Indian Army Abuse – A Young Indian’s View

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 25, 2011

I received this note from a young person living in India. Interestingly, in this person’s report, the Indian army comes off  badly and not the police. In the years that I lived in India, many Indians had great respect for the army but widely despised the police for their cruelty and corruption.

Whatever the case, Sathya Sai Baba is heavily surrounded by both police and army personnel all the way to the very highest echelons. These days, he is very fragile, his thoughts and actions unfocused, but he still rides around on his huge gold chariot, mounts his golden throne, and celebrates his birthdays with an enormously extravagant and wasteful pomp that attracts the scorn of most and the blinded fervour of his devotees.

But Sathya Sai Baba’s long-ago made predictions have spectacularly failed. He said that in the last quadrant of his life he would rule India and that the world would come to him in fealty. But he has not transformed India. One sees from its daily newspapers that it is not a land  of democracy – except for a thin veneer of it – but, rather of tragedy. And indeed India’s media fails to reveal a great deal because it is so heavily muzzled. It is, for example, foreign media like the BBC, The Times of London, The Telegraph, The Guardian, and newspapers in Europe, Canada and Australia that have been able to get the powerfully indicting Sathya Sai Baba facts out to the world.

WikiLeaks cables: India accused of systematic use of torture in Kashmir
‘Beatings and electric shocks inflicted on hundreds of civilians detained in Kashmir, US diplomats in Delhi told by ICR. Unrest in Kashmir, where a leaked cable said the Indian government ‘condoned torture’’. Photograph: Tauseef Mustafa/AFP/Getty Images

Even in those areas in which India, powerfully vying with China for superpower status, is making remarkable economic and  technological advances, it is light years away from the moral and spiritual dimensions that India’s often gerontocratic, nepotistic and astrology-mired leaders characteristically cite in their speeches.

The raw fact is that India is no less materialistic than the socio-economically developed countries which have, in their own way, in a mixture of rampant greed and untold ignorance, brought the planet to a point where its sustainability is in the gravest doubt.

The young Indian, recollecting the spirit of India’s national anthem, says:

“Army people keep saying “Mera Bharat Mahan” but they really don’t mean it. They torture the civilians like dogs. They treat every civilian as a terrorist. I hate the indian army. I don’t know to which ‘Bharath’ are they giving service. They are of no use to us. Some are really fighting for our country, I do respect those who serve our country, but not the others.  They are fit for nothing. Many Indian Army sections trouble the general people in every way. In our area there is a small defence area but they don’t allow us to pass through that area though we give them the valid residential proof, driving license and vehicle registration papers. They say only army people can pass through that area. What is the use if they cannot give service to the general public? Their behaviour is so rude with us. Even Indian police cannot do nothing about them. Recently one of our teachers met with an accident by a vehicle driven by an army person but we could not take any action on him only because he was an army person, and even the civil police was unable to take action. How long will our Country be like this? It has turned to hell. Many people elsewhere are not aware about the small incidents that happen with the people living nearby to the army area. We are troubled a lot”

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Further Reading

Indian Army and Police Torture: Wikileaks Revelations

Police and Army Rapists Rarely Punished, Says Kavita Krishnan (Of AIPWA)

Will India clean up its Augean police and political stables?

V.P.B. Nair Told BBC Sai Baba Bedroom Killings Were “Coldblooded Murder”

Prominent Indians Berate India’s Rife Political Corruption

Flag Follows Trade. Abetting Indian Government Corruption

Tony Blair Was to Visit Sai Baba. Plan Thwarted

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General

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

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

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Police and Army Rapists Rarely Punished, Says Kavita Krishnan (Of AIPWA)

Posted by Barry Pittard on January 11, 2011

Kavita Krishna, Secretary, All India Progressive Women’s Association, is one of those social justice reformers in India to whom I have at various times referred. Sathya Sai Baba forever preaches truth. right conduct and non-violence but here is an Indian woman who, among other terribly beleagered social justice advocates in India,  risk life and limb. 

 Like many other social reformers in India, she has pointed out:

 “Rape in police custody is very common in India, and in such cases, inevitably there is a huge cover-up and rarely at all has any police or army official ever been brought to trial in such cases”.

For many decades, visitors to Puttaparthi have seen Sathya Sai Baba surrounded by police and armed forces personnel all the way up to the top brass. His influence, then, in “cleaning up”, to use his phrase, his “own backyard” before transforming the world has some severe limitations.  These days, he is surrounded by Israeli-trained security personnel.

India’s social justice advocates have no such phalanx of security around them. They are often prey to violence. They also court that other great oppression:  silence.

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Kavita Krishnan

Kavita Krishnan

Secretary, All India Progressive Women’s Association

Posted: December 21, 2010 07:44 AM

In India, rape victims routinely face police harassment and refusal to file rape charges. Then, if at all charges are filed, judicial insensitivity, delayed trials, and so on. Only today, I received a report from our activists (of the All India Progressive Women’s Association) in Punjab, about the gang rape of a teenage dalit (oppressed caste) girl. This 17-year-old was lured by police personnel to the police station on the promise of a job, and was then imprisoned and raped by several prominent local citizens, including police officials and a local advocate. Our activists could get a police complaint filed with great difficulty and even now the girl and her family are being pressured to withdraw the case. In the same area of Punjab some years ago, a dalit singer, Bant Singh, had 3 of his limbs chopped off for supporting his daughter in securing a conviction of her rapists — some powerful local people.

Rape in police custody is very common in India, and in such cases, inevitably there is a huge cover-up and rarely at all has any police or army official ever been brought to trial in such cases. The case of gang rape and murder of a young Manipuri woman Thangjam Manorama by Indian army personnel in 2004 is one instance. Last year, there was the case of rape and murder of two Kashmiri women — Asiya and Nilofar — in Shopian, Kashmir, in which the Central Bureau of Investigation (India’s highest government investigative agency) helped in a shameful cover up, coming up with a report that claimed the two women ‘drowned’ in a stream six inches deep. The CBI’s forensic team reported, laughably, that rape had not occurred since the body of one of the women (a teenager), exhumed after four months, showed that “the hymen was intact”! In the Shopian case, doctors and lawyers who had testified to evidence of rape and murder have been prosecuted while the accused paramilitary personnel (as well as the police personnel who assisted in destroying evidence) go free. On This month (December 14), to mark one year of the Shopian rape and murder, women’s groups from all over India sent white sheets to the CBI office in Delhi — “for their next cover up.”

We could also recall the case was of gang rape of a rural women’s health worker Bhanwari Bai in 1995, where a judge ruled that she could not have been raped since she was of a ‘lower caste’ than the four ‘upper caste’ men accused of raping her. The judge’s offensive claim was that upper caste men would not deign to touch a lower caste woman, whereas rape is all too often deployed as a weapon to humiliate and suppress the oppressed castes in India. Another terrible recent rape case was the Khairlanji case where a dalit (oppressed caste) woman and her daughter were very brutally gang raped in full view of a village and then publicly massacred along with her two sons. There was a conviction in this case, (after all the usual delays and refusals by police to file a case) but the verdict was criticized by many activists because it convicted only for rape and refused to invoke India’s law against caste discrimination/atrocities.

In India’s forest areas, tribal women who have with great courage filed cases of rape against security personnel, have found that their rapists not only roam free, they freely abduct and threaten these women and their families that if the cases are pursued, they might be arrested or even killed after being branded as ‘extremists’ and ‘insurgents.’

The national capital, Delhi has seen a series of rape cases in recent times. A high-profile former police officer K P S Gill, himself convicted for sexual harassment, famously commented on the rise in rape cases in Delhi, “I would blame the women who try to wear certain clothes just to keep in tune with the trend. They are the ones who provoke men.” Likewise, in every single instance of rape it is routine to hear women being blamed for being out late at night or in the wrong company. The conviction rate for rape and sexual assault is extremely low. There have been many cases in India where judges have suggested that charges can be dropped if the rapist marries his victim. A former Chief Justice of India’s Supreme Court recently said in a public speech that women’s movement activists should not rule our marriage between rapists and their victims! A man convicted of rape recently had his sentence relaxed by a judge as a reward for clearing exams qualifying to be part of India’s national bureaucratic services.

Certainly, from the perspective of all those women in India who find the most brutal of rapists going free, protected by the police and the state, and their most serious charges of rape trivialized or even suppressed by force, the idea of a man being hunted down by Interpol on charges which are as complex and ambiguous as those in the Assange case is disturbing. From what I hear, Sweden’s rape laws are nothing to quarrel with, and are in fact quite enviable for us in India, where even marital rape is yet to be deemed illegal. But for the US to fire at Assange from the shoulders of the two Swedish women indeed is an insult to the women struggling in vain for justice the world over. It is possible that Assange’s casual flings with female fans may not be very democratic; he may be guilty of insensitivity to the concerns and rights of women (for instance their right to be free from HIV). But if sexism is a crime worthy of Interpol’s attention, then Interpol should immediately arrest Silvio Berlusconi and Bill Clinton,  just for starters!

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At Robert Priddy’s blogsite:  Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed

Beatings, torture and killings by Police in India 

Police expert on security at Prashanthi Nilayam 

Police chiefs in India can escape justice

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General

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Puttaparthi and Misconduct of Sathya Sai Baba’s Officials

Posted by Barry Pittard on December 16, 2009

Note, 18 July 2010: This earlier article reports on a deeply upsetting, indeed, ugly experience in my early days at Whitefield. Now that so many allegations against Sathya Sai Baba have surfaced year after year, the situation depicted here takes on still more sombre resonances.

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A correspondent, who has a noted role within the wider Hindu community, has just written to me:

“I visited Puttaparthi several times when I used to live in India and work at a nearby place called Anantapur, which was about 50 km from where Sai Baba lived. What I used to notice most during my visits was the rude behavior of the volunteers. I wondered why they were so rajassic and gross while the guru was preaching sattvic behavior and the canteen management took pride in serving sattvic food to enhance sattvic qualities”.

(Note: “Sattiwic” = Sanscrit; having a serene, harmonious, balanced mind or attitude. “Rajassic = Associated with animals and activity, emotions, desire, selfishness and passion. See any standard Sanscrit dictionary).

I should point out that, in my years at Puttaparthi and Whitefield, I have seen many volunteers do a splendid job; however, there is a nasty ‘underbelly’ which, to judge from continuing reports, has never been addressed. In some cases, Sai Baba and his authorities are complicit in monumental cover up, as in the case of the police killings in his bedroom in April 1993. See:  Sathya Sai Baba – questions and his silence

The writer’s thoughts prompted my recollections of an incident at the time I was teaching in Sathya Sai Baba’s college. It involved one of the other long-stay devotees, who had come to Sathya Sai Baba in the sixties, an American man named Joseph. In 1979, in the Whitefield ashram crowd awaiting Sai Baba’s public appearance (darshan), Joseph, began to talk out aloud – quite audibly for those who sat near on the sand, as I did. (A large auditorium now stands in that area). He was distressed and expressed moral outrage – he repeated that some college hostel boys had told him that Sai Baba had asked a number of them (in Joseph’s words) to “line up and masturbate.”

On the third or so day of Joseph’s dark rumblings, six hefty Indian male service volunteers (seva dals) came and dragged him out, his arms and legs flailing. The head service volunteer, whom I knew quite well, told me that Joseph had been ordered not to return. One can never forget the struggle that the immensely powerful Joseph put up, shouting out the accusations – no doubt for all to hear. It was clear that the accounts of the students had pained him, and that he was at great odds to somehow get a message out. An hour afterwards, the afore-mentioned volunteer told me that his duty (which he clearly regretted) was “like wrestling a tiger.”

A very distressed Indian man who had witnessed the harrowing proceedings said to me, “If Sai Baba is God, why do they need to use all this violence against this man?”

For the next few days, Joseph climbed a tree outside the ashram wall, and cried forth the allegations for us all to hear. Then, he was gone. I heard from a close friend and local resident, who knew some of the officers, that the Kadugodi police had thrashed Joseph, and sent him on his way. A disturbing implication is that it is very well-known that the local police are firmly in control of Sathya Sai Baba’s ashram authorities. Here was a well-known figure who had lived long in the community.

Many of us have had ‘flags’ which we have, in our psychological denial state, ignored. We sleep on, but after slamming the alarm clock off. Older well-informed devotees will recall brutal, corrupt people like Kumar, the betel nut chewing stick wielding ex superintendent of police, who was Sai Baba’s gatekeeper at Puttaparthi for many years? A woman in the Sai center which I attended told me of a traumatic experience of seeing terrible violence perpetrated by some of Sai Baba’s assistants. She said it was too painful to talk about and that the incident had presented her with grave inner struggles about Sai Baba.

Sathya Sai Baba’s devotees need to be honest and admit candidly that many dreadful happenings have long taken place around Sathya Sai Baba. Some may eventually come to realise that, once revelations come out, the memories of many others are triggered, and that information, especially in the age of information technology, spreads exponentially. What pro Sathya Sai Baba apologists who constantly attack those who speak out seem to fail to recognize is that a great deal of corroboration of the facts does not end with the work of prominent former devotee writers and other critics. Many make their own discoveries altogether unreliant on the latter. Also, huge numbers read our articles and examine video footage, and discuss with family, friends, colleagues, fellow members of associations, travellers, and so on. They print out and examine content. They ask questions, and some investigate rigorously, turning up appalling and compelling evidence. Thus, the word gets out, and never stops at the point of this or that blog site or web site

In time, darkness has a hard job hiding itself from itself.

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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

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Posted in Morality, Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Senior Indian Policeman (Rtd) Speaks Out About Sathya Sai Baba Murders Cover Up

Posted by Barry Pittard on August 7, 2009

As the years have passed, the Government of India and the Government of Andhra Pradesh have not been able to silence all police personnel. One who has refused to shut up is a senior, retired policeman V. J. Ram, whose work as a detective won him a Presidential Medal. He has spoken out against the massive cover up of the police killings in Sathya Sai Baba’s private quarters, when Sathya Sai Baba and his brother (the late) Janaki Ramaiah (who was on the Sathya Sai Central Trust) had charge of events soon after the slayings occurred.Those who wish to know more about V.J. Ram’s work are welcome to contact me (my details are obtainable by clicking here – Barry Pittard.  Details are at the foot of the article. One would like to see the V.J. Ram book get a decent publisher, and, as has been the wish expressed by former Andhra Pradesh Home Secretary V.P.B. Nair to the BBC, to see the case revisited. See transcript of Nair’s statement to the BBC HERE. See my articles:

 The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ and British Press Praise

It is to their historic shame that major newspaper proprietors co-operated in the news blanket that went into force. Many Indian journalists and editors, politicians from various parties, government officials and others know of the profound extent of the cover up by the then powerful Home Minister S.B. Chavan, a devotee of Sathya Sai Baba, who sped to Puttaparthi from New Delhi to set in motion the suppression of the facts. See

V.J. Ram writes: An account  of the massive bribery involved reported by a former top CID sleuth, V. J. Ram, who received a Presidential Medal for his detective services to the Indian State.

Note:  Long before worldwide allegations of Sathya Sai Baba’s serial sexual abuse of boys and young men began to surface in earnest – circa AD 2000 – notable individuals shocked by signs of cover up – started to analyze situations, and leave the Sathya Sai Baba camp. For an example of early investigators, see the article by Warren C. Pyke LLN (Hons.) LLM (VUW), Barrister, New Zealand 3-3-1993: Sathya Sai Baba Murders Evidence (A New Zealand Barrister Analyses Police Evidence). Another earlier investigator of various serious allegations against Sathya Sai Baba was Terry Gallagher, an agricultural scientist and businessman who, in consequence of his findings, resigned as head of the Sathya Sai Organization in Australia. See:  Terry Gallagher’s Testimony

Robert Priddy on the Police Killings in Sai Baba’s Private Quarters

 Former leader of the Norwegian Sathya Sai Organization and retired academic at the University of Oslo Robert Priddy has written extensively about the police killings in Sathya Sai Baba’s private chamber in April 1963. A very useful and succinct introduction to the events is: Sathya Sai Baba Bedroom Murders

Select Resources (which contain many other links)

 Main article on the murders in Sathya Sai Baba’s private quarters in 1993 and the cover-up
Further material on the bedroom murders of four Sai devotee intruders etc.
Untoward events at Sai Baba ashrams
Sai Baba ashram news reports
Review of the Murders in Sai Baba’s bedroom issue
Murder of German-speaking lady at Prashanthi Nilayam and the follow-up
V.K. Narasimhan on the 1993 murders – as recorded in notes at the time
The Week’s coverage of the murders in Prashanthi Nilayam ashram
Further discussion of the executions at Sathya Sai Baba’s ashram in 1993

 See also Public Petition for Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and his Worldwide Organization

(Spanish version PETICIÓNPÚBLICA PARA INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, Opinion, Religion, Skeptics, South Asia, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Attacks Against Indian Students in Melbourne, Australia

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 2, 2009

There have been most shocking physical attacks against Indian students in Melbourne, Australia. Some 90, 000 Indian students now study here, second to China in the number of foreign nationals studying.  Australia intends to attract many more. They need to feel safe and respected. Yesterday’s news reported what is alleged to have been a peaceful demonstration waylaid by a small number of anti-social elements.

In March 2009, this blog reported Channel NineMSN’s exposure of security personnel violence against protesting staff and disabled clients at SWARA (run by one of the superluminaries of the Sathya Sai sect, Moyia O’Brien) in Brisbane. Reports that suggest the Melbourne protest was derailed by over-reaction of authorities, brought back eerie reminders of those accounts which a number of those involved (including those who remain Sathya Sai Baba devotees) have given.

In both the Brisbane case (security personnel) and the Melbourne case (police, including mounted police), violence by authorities has been seen. Irresponsible commentators see no reason why the actions of security and police should be examined. They fail to ask whether proactive, peaceful methods could have been used, instead of the violent handling of what had been organized as a peaceful protest. It is an old theme – and authorities in modern democracies cannot hide, though they try to, violent propensities. 

(For the SWARA case, see under Reading and Viewing, below)

As a nation, we need to decide whether we wish small numbers of louts to shopfront us to the world. More fundamentally, we have to find solutions to  danger posed by those marginalizing forces which create unemployed, dispossessed angry  young people who lurk by day and night on street corners unleashing their contempt for human life and property. Boldness and imagination can address these problems. We cannot depend on politicians to be bold and imaginative; we have to be bold and imaginative ourselves.

Melbourne newspaper The Age yesterday reported (May 31, 2009)  Gautam Gupta, a spokesman for the Federation of Indian Students of Australia (FISA) as saying:

“We want a multicultural police section and we want crime statistics made public so that we know the extent of the problem,” he said.

The protesters also wanted on-site accommodation for Indian students at all universities and colleges.

“We want blanket cover for all international students, covering them for accidents and assaults and the government should run an ad campaign highlighting positive influence that migrants and international students have made to this country.”

           Mr Gupta blamed outsiders for the trouble outside the station, saying it was always meant to be a peaceful rally.

“People have been angry over the past few weeks, especially the young people, but it was supposed to be a peaceful rally. Unfortunately there were some agitators there, stirring things up … They had their own agenda,” he said.

Many Australians with experience of Indian students know of their characteristic politeness and hard-working qualities. They do credit to their country. Let me give a small, though I think iconic, example of an arrangement that could, badly handled, have gone terribly awry. Because of huge outsourcing by Australia to India of telecom handling of public enquiries and complaints, the extraordinary politeness and patience of the Indian operators have become a byword among millions in Australia.

But something nasty is astir, though it should not deflect attention away from the fact that a great many Australians support multi-culturalism, a fact that has been strongly shown in poll after poll, including at the height of the Mrs Pauline Hanson’s deplorably simplistic political presence in the nineties. However, support is more than sentiments stated to pollsters. The real fairness and justice require that we do not pass by, and turn blind eyes, and cocoon ourselves or fail to inform ourselves. It is not by our deploring racism that our humanity will be guaged.

At the same time, heated debate over whether the attacks were based on racism or opportunistic, soft-targeting should not be allowed to obscure the fact that all citizens and visitors alike have every right to feel safe. Politicians in Australia of all complexions have been characteristically unbold in looking for solutions to poverty.

One question that has to be driven is this:  Are tougher sentences and proposed clauses such as ‘hatred for or prejudice against a particular group of people’, remedies that are anywhere near sufficient? The question about the extent of racism in a country may not, in the present context, be the most pressing or relevant one. Pressures in a changing society can make an issue that may be relatively isolated grow much larger. Emphasis on tough policing and judicial solutions, without a far wider suite of remedies, can ensure. counter-productively, that the hateful violent are increasingly sent to one of the best-known ‘colleges’ of hatred – the prison system, itself in grave need of reform. Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s prompt assurances to India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh must be accompanied with sophisticated action. The raw-nerve (sometimes knee-jerk, sometimes cynical) reaction evinced by many politicians about finding and punishing the culprits will not do. The problem is far more complex.

Radically, we need to ensure that a false sense of ‘justice’ having been done is not engendered. Especially in dealing with aftermaths of crime (and for preventive capacity over time), I would point to far wider notions of ‘Restorative Justice’ – which some institutions, including police, have had success with. See, Restorative justice: An Australian perspective.

Racism thrives on ignorance, and on unreal social structures where persons and groups cannot get to interact with and appreciate persons and groups who are different. The locus of Australia’s achievements in multi-culturalism were not the politicians, but were staged in the Australian suburbs. They belong to the people, both older Australians and migrants, and they must not let political elites obsure or attempt top down solutions.

Racism and urban crime and violence greatly worsen in times of economic hardship and unemployment. India’s High Commissioner to Australia, Sujatha Singh, has said that she thinks Australia is not a racist society, but that there were are elements in Australia that hold “racist attitudes”. Referring to the Victoria Police, she spoke of a “lack of sensitivity” towards Indian student victims of crime. Mrs Singh has very rightly criticised the suggestion from the Victoria Police, with whom she has had an urgently-called meeting, that Indian students should move to safer suburbs. This police reaction the students’ realities lacks aliveness to the situation of many students. For many Indian and other foreign students, since they have to use their money extremely judiciously, live in lower rent suburbs, at a sacrifice of long periods of travel to and from their places of study. This fact lends futher strength to the call by the Federation of Indian Students of Australia (FISA) for a multi-cultural police section. I recently had the pleasure of meeting a busload of young Indian students who were visiting Steve Irwin’s famous Australia Zoo, and had a great chat. They studied Catering here.  They were by no means all from well-to-do sectors.

A very real question is: why is some given suburb unsafe? If it is unsafe, then the situation is not only a policing matter but also a matter that needs to be addressed by the whole community, with inputs from all the civic, religious, cultural, sporting, political and social welfare groups. 

It is to be hoped that other countries will not be shy of demanding strong accountability of Australia for the most proactive welfare of their students who study in this country.

The Age reports that The Deputy Commissioner of the Victorian Police Walshe believes ‘some Indian students were being attacked because they were by nature quiet and passive people, they travelled late at night, often alone and carried expensive gadgets’.

But if the situation is not fast and well-addressed (and one of the criticisms of the police and Victorian Government is that they have not acted sensitively or properly), India will not be too quiet and passive, and nor should she be.

We in Australia cannot forever, and unchallenged, pose ourselves as the great and successful multicultural undertaking on which many of us have felt a pride. Though there is truth and remarkable accomplishment, there is a point at which the resting on laurels, lazy assumptions and government propaganda have to be ground to a halt by our strong effort.

Among other authorities, Australian educators are going to have to address these issues very seriously and proactively. No ethnic group, or individual, should have to suffer any slight. A few years ago, I learnt that my former Indian yoga teacher, a woman, one of the most gracious and loved people one could ever meet, had been spat on. The disturbingness of this act dealt to one person is serious, but what to speak when reports of horrible actions are wider-spread.  

Having been a University student at the time of the great moratoriam marches against the war in Vietnam, and close enough to some of the events to know the facts, it was easy to see how very small but vicious agitator elements posed a danger to triggering off trouble. Key dangers were a minority of rabble, and the governments of the day and their police forces. Over the years, there have been reforms to police practice, including raising the educational qualifications, greatly increasing the presence of women, breaking down cultures of sectarianism, nepotism, and so forth. The Victorian government will need to probe whether any of the police acted outside proper professional guidelines.

It is no use Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd simply “deploring” to India and “assurring” her of urgent action. The problem lies far deeper than political accommodations can reach. All of us need to be engaged in the peaceful solution.

A Helpline for Indian students who are victims of crime is available: 1800342800. From 10am to 5pm, and 7pm to 11pm, Monday to Friday.

Reading and Viewing  – with link to the Channel NineMSN Australian Current Affairs program. This shows the sickening conduct of security personnel, seen by millions of Australians. The security detail was called by SWARA, when, to judge from the wide and separate questioning of those who had been involved, and from careful examination of the footage, the position appears to be clearly this: that social work professionals, volunteers and disabled clients were assailed without SWARA’s recourse to those pillars of Sathya Sai Baba’s teachings which SWARA professes to hold: Truth, Right Conduct, Love, Peace and Non-violence. There are those close to the issues who still regard themselves as Sathya Sai Baba devotees who have used such terms as “disgusted” when they describe the conduct of SWARA committee personnel.

On The Attacks on Students

Indian Students Attacked In Melbourne Australia: Cricket Star Brett Lee Voices Concerns

Australia’s Channel NineMSN Exposes Security Violence At SWARA

Sathya Sai Baba Cult Exposure By Major TV Channel In Australia

Sathya Sai Cult Under Media Scutiny In Australia

Australian Current Affair: ‘Infiltrating A Cult’ (Sathya Sai Baba)

(see the original video and report here)

Posted in News and Politics, Opinion, Politics, Sikhism, Social and Politics, South Asia, Uncategorized, World Issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »