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A glaring example of how the Sathya Sai Organisation suppresses freedom of speech and accountability through secret top-down decisions and destruction of evidence is clearly demonstrated by a number of letters from its US leader in 1981, Dr, John Hislop. This has been continued and even strengthened under the present International Chairman and US leader, Dr. Michael Goldstein, as exposed on BBC TV.

Date: 03-13-05

By: Robert Priddy

The next letter by Dr. John Hislop took the line that allegations of fraudulence and homosexual abuse against Sathya Sai Baba have dropped off because they are not sustainable. But that was back in 1981! Everything has changed irrevocably since then.

When the Internet made contact between abused persons and between ex-devotees spread across the globe very much easier, the emergence of many more such allegation was triggered off by David and Faye Bailey with 'The Findings' in late 1999. These facts invalidated Hislop's forlorn hopes (incidentally, he died of cancer before the new storm burst in 1999).

Hislop makes the absurd and unsupportable claim that Sai Baba is "always surrounded by people, and everything he does is under intense scrutiny". But Hislop knew better than this. Firstly, no one have ever been able to - nor can now - scrutinise what Sai Baba does in his private interview room - a fact known to every devotee. There is a curtain he draws, and also doors which he closes firmly at times. Secondly, only those boys who share his bedroom (proven by various printed accounts, plus Sai Baba's own published statements in his monthly journal Sanathana Sarathi - June 1998, pps 142-3 or ) can 'scrutinise' what he does between the time he retires and gets up. Thirdly, no one can follow Sai Baba wherever he goes, even his closest adult servitors are told when they are wanted and when not. Therefore John Hislop is seen to have been an active part of the cover-up of Sai Baba's secret activities.

In accordance with this Sai Org. cult of secrecy, the transactions of the Sathya Sai Central Trust are closed to all observers (including donors) and are conducted in secret and without minutes being presented, if indeed they are even kept. The Trust has proved to be totally unaccountable to the inquiries of journalists (during their investigations after the 1993 murders in Sai Baba's bedroom) or to the public at large, including devotees. The same applies to the two private Sai hospitals, where even the patient registers are kept secret.

The claims SB made to Hislop that "... false allegations are reduced to ashes by My Divinity". He would claim the allegations are false, every abuser would. But the many allegations persist and the issue is far from closed. The massive record of sex abuse allegations for decades and the exposure of his many documented lies, deceits and frauds (including many reported and even filmed 'faked materialisation' of vibuthi, watches, 'diamonds' etc.) is still accumulating and is copiously available to forewarn everyone who may be inducted into this increasingly secretive and closed-off personality cult. All who are not self-programmed 'true believers' can see at once that SB's preaching and practice are all too often completely at odds. On various occasions Sai Baba has proclaimed that the whole world loves him, yet Hislop tells of recent assassination and kidnap attempts against him. Such threats to Sai Baba have continued since then, necessitating a massive 24-hour security presence of armed guards and undercover agents in his ashrams. SB is hardly becoming "a more and more worldwide personality", despite the truly massive propaganda efforts for him on the Internet and a barrage of clinically-whitewashed public meetings. His former fame is being surpassed by his present infamy.

One sentence in the above is particularly revealing of the head-in-the-sand policy of Hislop and most Sai devotees:- "Those Sai devotees who have direct knowledge of Him or faith equivalent to such knowledge are not a problem." and continues "for they quite properly run away". Yes, to "run away" is the only answer they have. But certain devotees who have been very close to Sai Baba have not run (eg. David Bailey - over 100 interviews, the Rahm family, Conny Larsson - constant interviews over decades, and at least a dozen others close to SB and central in his organisation for very long periods). As to those who had established enough faith in him to have written books and profuse articles in his monthly journal Sanathana Sarathi (including myself), the list of such defectors who have seen through the entire hall of mirrors is also ever growing longer. Many are still contacting exposÚ activists, but for a range of differing reasons most wish to remain anonymous and their names are therefore never published. For example, we have received a very credible report of more very cynical killings by security forces at the ashram last October (two foreign ladies) and one Indian student in SB's Poornachandra rooms necessitating his new apartment. This is no mere rumour, since our source on this information has been checked and is most definitely genuine, but the facts are currently under investigation (by non-Indian agencies) and cannot yet be substantiated by us.

Hislop saw the Sai Org.'s problem as being "those who are not well acquainted with Swami and who are wavering their their minds about the series (of) allegations against him." Indeed, but - completely unlike the present extremely censorious leadership - Hislop actually suggested: "Those people should have someone available with whom they can talk out their doubts."Though the aim of such talks was clearly to remove those doubts (by hook or by crook), but NOT by examination of the testimony or gathering evidence, Hislop would himself now qualify for 'instant silent excommunication' from the Sai Org. by the standards of the present International Chairman and his minions like the European Central Coordinator, Thorbj°rn Meyer, who removed from office the President of the Moscow Centre (Serguei Badaev) directly after he had allowed a mild discussion on those very doubts.

One wholly correct assertion Hislop made was: "Letters are likely to "escape" and float in every direction without control." Yes, indeed... they do and have done so! Hislop wanted to kill all investigation by avoiding any documentation of his clamp-down activities and in camera "consumated conversations". That is why Dr. Michael Goldstein never commits any such considerations to paper, but he did not reckon with the BBC using a hidden camera to interview him to get his real opinion for their documentary. The tragic fact behind all this is the blind-faith Sai devotees' powerful dependency on an external figure due to unsatisfied personal needs and a sense of meaninglessness without it. As Goldstein expressed his utter dependency of Sai Baba after making over 60 visits to India from the USA by 1993: "Swamy gives a purpose to our life and meaning to our life. A life without purpose is demeaning." (Guru Purnima talk, July 1993 at Prashanthi).