The Ahmedabad district police, on Wednesday, filed a chargesheet against absconding self-styled godman Nithyananda and the two managers of his Ahmedabad ashram. The managers, presently in judicial custody, have been accused of physically abusing minor children and earning money by making them labour.
An FIR was filed on November 17, 2019, by one Janardhana Sharma at the Vivekanandnagar police station accusing the two ashram managers for allegedly abducting, confining and torturing two of his minor children and an adult daughter.
The FIR against Nithyananda, Ma Priyatattvananda and Ma Pranpriyananda, charged them under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 364 (Abducting), 344 (Wrongful confinement), 323 (Voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (Intentional insult) and 506(2) (Criminal intimidation), along with sections of the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act. The chargesheet, too, includes these charges.
The chargesheet further states that the complainant’s two minor children and one adult daughter were taken for propagating Nithyananda’s messages and speeches via Facebook and other social media. The children would allegedly be prepared to perform other work based on Nithyananda’s instructions, The managers would get the children ready, make them dance and indulge in child labour, so as to “achieve target.” If the target was not met, the children would be verbally and physically abused, as per the chargesheet. The money earned from the children’s labour would be deposited to a bank account of the Nithyanandeshwara Devsthan Trust, which amounted to Rs 95,000. Another expense account of the same trust had Rs 35,000, stated the chargesheet.
A third bank account in the name of Indumati Centre for Siddha Medicine, parked Rs 1,35,000 in different accounts, totalling to Rs 9,64,000 as alleged in the chargesheet.
Interpol issues Blue Corner Notice
Interpol has issued a Blue Corner Notice seeking information about controversial self-styled godman Nithyananda, who fled the country amid allegations of wrongful confinement of children, officials said on Wednesday. A Blue Corner Notice is issued by the international police cooperation body to collect additional information from its member countries about a person’s identity, location or activities in relation to a crime.
The Gujarat Police had sent a request to the CBI, the nodal body for Interpol matters in India, seeking a Blue Corner Notice against Nithyananda, the officials said. “Interpol issued the Blue Corner Notice against the controversial godman this month,” Deputy Superintendent of Police, Ahme-dabad (rural), K T Kamariya, told PTI. The police said they are now working to get Interpol to issue a Red Corner Notice, a global arrest warrant, against Nithyananda. The Gujarat Police had registered an FIR against Nithyananda after two girls went missing from his ashram in Ahmedabad. He was charged with kidnapping and wrongful confinement of children to make them collect donations from followers to run his ashram.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines