Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed

Exposing major deceits by guru Sathya Sai Baba in India, incl. murders cover-up & widely alleged sexual abuse

Archive for November 26th, 2008

Sathya Sai Baba ashram visits

Posted by robertpriddy on November 26, 2008

Be warned and forearmed – murders, deaths, mortal accidents, illnesses, suicides at Sai ashrams

There are serious hazards in visiting Sathya Sai Baba ashrams which are never explained to visitors. The number of covered-up incidents is obviously unknown, but those which have leaked out make clear that many foreign devotees have died in Prashanthi Nilayam and Brindavan, others have disappeared, others have died in accidents which have also been hushed up and the facts buried.  Dozens of visitors have taken their own lives in the ashrams, near them or after  visiting them. Some were literally executed within the ashram itself, like a German-speaking Swiss lady who was knifed to death in her new room at Prashanthi Nilayam. The most notorious incident was the murders in Sai Baba’s bedroom of 1993 where 6 devotees lost their lives, four of them defenselessly gunned down by the police on ashram orders! (see at foot of this blog)

The constant cover-up of crime and death by Sai Baba officials

It is not possible to document most deaths that are known to ashramites, organization members or visitors  because the ashrams exercise the tightest possible secrecy and control of information about all untoward incidents (both the ashram staff and all Sathya Sai Baba’s foreign officials in the Sathya Sai Organization). There has certainly been a much larger number of deaths than is generally known. No records of any kind are kept or made available in any way, let alone to the public, by the ashrams. – not even about those who die of natural causes there or of one or another of the many serious illnesses that are contracted by visitors (including polio, cholera, chronic amoebic dysentery and even malaria – I know of at least one case of each of these).

Added to this, of course, are the usual hazards of many serious vehicle accidents – which have affected numerous devotees, including even major donors to Sai Baba such as Mrs. Barbara Sinclair, who died in a taxi accident on the way there , having been called by Sai Baba to visit just then (see ‘Cash for Honours, Sai Baba style‘)

There have been deaths from other ashram accidents too. Three US devotes were killed in an avoidable accident when the concrete dome of the ‘Eternal Heritage Spiritual Museum’ at Prashanthi Nilayam collapsed and crashed through three floors (27-10-1990), crushing two American ladies to death (Mrs. John Brown Hebel (45) and Mrs. Air Bonnie Lynni Mainaric (43), of San Francisco) and also 26-year old Michael Oliver, who suffered nine fractures and internal injuries. I spoke to him after the accident – he went through 11 hours more terrible suffering in a taxi to Bangalore. The entire matter was hushed up immediately, with the support of Jack Hawley (a Sai Baba true believer) The parents of a daughter – Bonny, who was killed outright – received no proper explanation, nor even an offer of compensation. I attended their cremation at the Chitravati river bank. (See the Hindu’s report)

No one is ever told that there are numerous armed plainclothes guards mingling with ordinary visitors, in addition to the highly visible armed guards and security persons who are there to protect Sai Baba (by Indian Government order), who were installed not long after six young men were murdered in Sai Baba’s bedroom apartment in June 1993.

Crowding a serious danger at Prashanthi Nilayam

V.K. Narasimhan was told by Sathya Sai Baba that unfortunately nothing could be done to avert the visit of the former Indian President, Dayal Sharma, to the 70th birthday. (Apropos, is it not strange that Sai Baba, who claims to be omnipotent and to be the only being having any free will, should suddenly be so powerless!) That presidential visit in 1996 cost the Indian State 6 million rupees for the deployment of 3000 armed Black Beret security guards, whose imperious and catastrophic methods of crowd control nearly caused people to be trampled to death at the gates of the Stadium. Some were trampled, but recovered, including some American ladies for whom the experience and injuries sustained were very traumatic. However, some former devotees have informed me that one US lady was killed in this way, and there was no way that the facts could be cleared up due to powerlessness before the ashram officials in complicity with the Puttaparthi police. My wife and her friends were also affected most severely, almost unable to breathe and incapable of moving an inch in the enormous pushing crowd before the stadium gates, which the Black Berets kept closed long after the time announced for their opening, all because the President’s car had not yet appeared.

This is of course not untypical of the high-handed and counter-productive kinds of ‘crowd control’ often seen in India, where deaths by crushing at large religious and other gatherings are fairly regular occurrences.  The ashram administration would immediately have done as they always do when anyone dies in their precincts. They make every effort, including payments to those involved, so as to hush things up… even send all foreigners away from the ashram within the day at the latest so as to stop the news spreading. This happened when the Swiss lady was murdered and on another occasion when I was present.

The former leader Sathya Sai Organisation in UK, Mr. Lucas Ralli, author of at least five books purporting to be ‘received’ from Sathya Sai Baba (Sai Messages  for You and Me in 5 vols), was nearly suffocated in a crowd at a birthday celebration a year or two previous to the 70th birthday, when the Black Berets were also present and, through their stupidity nearly caused a major crowd catastrophe. He determined that he would never again visit the ashram (where he had his own apartment, which he thus had to relinquish). He tried to improve the totally undemocratic practices in the Sathya Sai Organization and was – in his own words to me  “thrown out” (i.e. sacked from his office and excluded from membership) by the International Chairman Indulal Shah for having the temerity to suggest radical changes to the regulations because of the unrest in the UK organization about them. The Charter of the organization has been sent to every country for just such suggestions! He never returned there again (he has died since).

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