The utterly scandalous way the murders in Prashanthi Nilayam – the fiefdom Sathya Sai Baba ruled over completely – were covered up to the highest level of government needs to be held before the public repeatedly. If ever empty words were uttered, Sai Baba’s ‘help ever, hurt never’ qualify fully. It is known to many devotees and all dissidents that Sathya Sai Baba was deeply implicated in the murder of four of his devotees in his bedroom in June 1993 after a stand-off between the Puttaparthi police and the four intruders while decisions were made on what to do about them. The foremost India skeptic of the time, Basava Premanand, compiled a huge mass of documentations and evidence, both hard and circumstantial. A very compressed summary of some of his main points extracted from his various writings follows:-
My writ petition in High Court etc., was only for a CBI enquiry and not to a court where I have to present witnesses and prove the case. Murders are police cases and it is the responsibility of the police to investigate and arrest the culprits and produce them in the court along with witnesses. The newspaper items were submitted – not as a proof – but to show how agitated the people were because of the destruction of the evidence by the police and the silence by Sathya Sai Baba and the followers who were present at the time of the murders. Every newspaper in India published about the murders, although the Sathya Sai Baba official magazine Sanathana Sarathi was remarkably silent.
The A.P. state government, the central government, central excise and customs department, the law enforcement department, state CB- CID, C.B.I, CVC, Courts all know what is happening in Sai Baba’s Empire. they can act only on specific orders from the state and central government. This is proved by the State Government closing this murder case on RDO’s report suppressing the CB-CID report by throwing it in cold storage. About the information on the agencies and the government I am not interested as these are about them and GM can refer to them in his speculations about them. That the governments did not take any action against me strongly supports my statements published in the book ‘Murders in Sai Baba’s Bed Room’.
First of all N.Radhakrishna and Sai Kumar Mahajan cannot be stabbed by the alleged assailants at 10.30 PM because they were in the super speciality hospital and reportedly died there at 9.50 and 9.45 pm. ( I do not accept that N.Radhakrishna and Sai Kumar Mahajan died at 9:50 PM and 9:45 PM respectively. I only pointed out the Inquest Reports) [[ I deny the FIR that Radhakrishna and Sai Kumar Mahajan were stabbed in the Sathya Sai Baba's residence after 10.30PM. I have accepted that Radhakrishna and Sai Mahajan died because of poison. I accepted that the 4 assailants entered the mandir at about 10.30 PM based on the receipt of the telegram at 10.05 PM. The proof of the telegram received by Suresh Santharam Prabhu is in the register in the telegraph office. The newspaper reports of this filed in the writ petition have not been refuted by the court nor by the advocates of Sathya Sai Baba in the case, nor were any affidavits filed to that effect! When the alleged assailants entering Sathya Sai Baba residence at about 10.30 they cannot stab the aides in the residence as they were in SSH at that time - dead already by 9.50 PM and 9.45 PM, according to the doctors. Sathya Sai Baba got it covered up. The Inquest Report does not state anything about the two other aides receiving treatment at the same time as Radhakrishna and Mahajan. No one had verified that Bhat and Patley were in the hospital undergoing treatment. Even in the FIR only mentions: “it is further learnt that all the four injured were shifted to SSH. I found all doors of Mandir were bolted from inside.” If all the doors of the mandir were bolted from inside, it is not explained how the 4 aides were shifted to SSH.]]
Sathya Sai Baba’s Guru Pournima Discourse cannot all be taken on face value, as it was given 27 days after the murders. There was criticism in the newspapers as to how the 4 aides were stabbed at 10.30 PM when they were in SSH, the time given by SSH doctors for Radhakrishna’s death.
But what about Sai Kumar’s death time, which he did not mention?
The question is how and why potassium cyanide, syringes and needles were found in the western side of the mandir at the door which leads up to Sai Baba’s dining room.
What I have mentioned in Reference 4 moreover was that N. Radhakrishana and Sai Kumar Mahajan’s bodies would have been sent to the super specialty hospital to be cremated in the electric crematorium, so that they would disappear from the earth. This is supported by the fact that the alarm system was activated only at 10:30 PM and not earlier when the 4 injured aides were taken to the hospital”
“The murder of the 4 alleged assailants also would have been a secret if their bodies were cremated in the electric crematorium. But because they activated the alarm the devotees gathered around the Sai Baba residence. So the police help was sought to get out of the murders by a story explained in the F.I.R to rescue Sai Baba. It is this alarm which forced Sai Baba to rush out of the place of crime so that he would not have been accused of murders.”
A discourse was given by Sathya Sai Baba in which he talks about N. Radhakrishna offering him buttermilk. The story told by him was published by Sri Sathya Sai Publication Society (Vol.1 Page 366 in the book see also here). Baba took a small sip and let N. Radhakrishna drink the rest. According to Sathya Sai this happened at 7:30pm. However, Sathya Sai doesn’t explicitly state that Sai Kumar Mahajan drank any. Did not Radhakrishna go out at 7.30 pm and was not Sai Kumar Mahajan was with Sathya Sai Baba in his bedroom? When Radha Krishna knows that Sathya Sai Baba does not drink buttermilk in the evening why did he offer butter milk to Sathya Sai Baba? Was he afraid that the cooks had mixed the poison in the buttermilk? Or was it to prove that the butter milk did not contain poison that Sathya Sai Baba sipped a little? This story was told by Sathya Sai Baba to his audience – that the poison was not in the butter milk. The people around Sathya Sai Baba in his mandir have remained silent. If Sathya Sai Baba was innocent what was the necessity for the coterie to remain silent?
The time of 10.30 PM – 10.45 PM was when the 4 alleged assailants entered the Sathya Sai Baba mandir.
On 9.6.1993 Indian Express (Vol II page 55 of my book) informed that several attempts to gain access to the F.I.R filed in the case were also thwarted by the officers and their subordinates. I have not accepted that the F.I.R was true anywhere but there is other information collected in my book.
When the post mortem reports on the 4 alleged assailants very clearly states that they died of shock and haemorrhage due to fire arm injuries about 12 to 36 hours prior to autopsy and all injuries are ante-mortem only, why in the case of N.Radhakrishna and Sai Kumar Mahajan was it stated the deceased would appear to have died of shock and hemorrhage as the result of multiple injuries? The doctor did not specifically state that the injuries were ante-mortem because he suspected that the injuries were post mortem. I have not mentioned this anywhere in the references because the post mortem reports do not specifically state that the injuries were ante-mortem, it must mean that the injuries were ante-mortem.
“The opinion in the post-mortem reports of the two aides of Sai Baba states vaguely (Vol I page 347,349) that the 4 deceased would appear to have died to shock & hemorrhage on a result of multiple injuries. This proves that the two aides died not of stab injuries. It is not the inquest report but the post-mortem and forensic report which explains how they died. The mandal magistrate was not there at the place of occurrence as a witness to state that both the deaths were due to stabbing
The Inquest Report on Sai Kumar Mahajan stated:
1) “White cotton full shirt with blood smears; on right side below shirt is torn
2) white pyjama is with blood stains
3) drawer with blood stain”.
The Inquest report and Post Mortem Certificates will not mention about poisoning. The explosives were not found before the murder when, as per protocol, the police had to fully search the Prasanthi Nilayam premises as political VIP’s were visiting.
The explosives were not found even in the 1st search on June 7th, but later. It has been claimed by persons attempting to cover-up and obfuscate the facts that “the inquest failed to specifically say that Radhakrishna’s pants had blood on them”.
The white shirt and banian were full of blood; the trouser did not have even blood smears or blood stains.
The death time given in the inquest report is the time given by the Super Speciality Hospital. Read No.III (Vol. Page 342)
I know very well the Doctors who conducted post mortem. (I did not call him as a material witness for expert testimony because my writ petition was for a CBI enquiry. The higher courts are not the places to bring witnesses.) We have members who are forensic experts: the CCMB and Dr.P.M. Bhargava the founder Director of CCMB (Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology) are our life members. There are others like Dr.M.W.Pandit, who is also a life member, and who proved in the court against Swami Premananda of Trichinopoly that our method was far superior to the methods in use in England. I had met all the three doctors. My letters dated 7.1.1994 in vol I page 81 state that I have met them in a meeting whose terms remain confidential.
As disproof of what some badly uninformed and unqualified commentators from abroad have asserted, the police have nowhere stated that the four alleged assailants confronted the devotees in the Mandir at 9:30 pm. This report on the investigation on the telegram (received by Suresh Santharam Prabhu who was murdered the same night) was published in Mathrubhumi after checking with the records of the Telecommunications department of Puttaparthi. Justice Balakrishna Erady a trustee of the Sathya Sai Baba central Trust is a Director of Mathrubhumi. More than this, this newspaper’s owners are strong Sathya Sai Baba devotees. This report on the telegram was published along with an article by Justice Balakrishna Erady about what happened on 6.6.1993. If the telegram news was false, it is all too likely that Justice Erady, being a director would have taken action against the reporter of Mathrubhumi and the person who has accepted Sathya Sai Baba as god incarnate.
The C.I.D investigations revealed that the police tampered with and destroyed evidence and lied about it.
“The AP State government, the Central Government, the Central Excise and Customs Department, the State CB-CID, CBI, CVC, Courts – all know what is happening in Sai Baba’s Empire. This I have expressed because investigations departments like CB-CID, CBI, and CVC have already collected details but, due to political influence, they cannot take any action.
Basava Premanand – Editor, Indian Skeptic (see http://www.saibaba-x.org.uk/31/index.html)