V. RAMNATH'S RECORDED COMMENTS (Christmas 1996) ON HIS FORMER ASSOCIATE, VIJAY PRABHU
Note that the notes scanned on the left were made at the home of Mr. Ramnath in Yelahanka, not at the ashram, so the usual diary comments on darshans etc. don't appear. The text is a summary of what V. Ramnath told me (transcipts below scans)
Transcript: Vijay Prabhu was originally thr manager of a small factory that made undergarments for the ashram shops. Then he was made head of ashram security at P.N. by Baba! He was in this capacity when the attack was planned. Some time previously he had been given the task of being the personal guard of Ashok Singhal, the leader of the Hindu Vishwa Parishad, who instigated the tearing down of the 'Ayodhya' mosque. Singhal was at Puttaparthi for 1 month (and was in Brindavan later in 1994). He even gave an address during the Brindavan summer school on Indian Culture & Spirituality (in 1991?) on dharma etc.!! (before Baba!!)
(Note that "before Baba' means 'in front of Sai Baba')
Prabhu left Puttaparthi in a bus just after the attack failed. He had apparently fled because of the plans going wrong. He was accompanied by his accomplice. Between the two they dropped a revolver and one of their identity cards!!
Being chief of security and being very negative in attitude to all the 'goonda' hierarchy in P.N., he had apparently tried to extend his own function to removing the scoundrels in the ashram set-up. Most likely he was Incidentally, he was of the opinion that more than 90% of Swami's students do not believe that Baba is the avatar!!
What may seem surprising here to those who know how devotees - from abroad at least - in general feel and think about Sai Baba, the ashrams and other surrounding circumstances - it is quite extreme to read what Mr. Ramnath spoke about almost off-handedly. It was a great surprise and unwelcome eye-opener to me. I undertood more and more how most Indian, especially devotees, hold back a great deal about what they think and know. However, Ramnath was not of that kind, being of the Indian elite who had confidence and relative ease of speech in frank and was freely non self-censoring. I had entertained but few 'negative' ideas of this colour prior to meeting him. Like most long-term devotees I was cynical about the running of the ashrams - the evident pettiness, discrimination, jealousies and harassments of foreigners - but not in the way and to the extent that I found Ramnath was.
Ramnath was outspoken about Vijay Prabhu, a former associate whom he also knew from the ashram fairly well. He considered him a decent person who had done a lot of unselfish service work, but one who became too obsessed - in his view - with the wrongdoings and wrongdoers at the ashram. He could not understand how such an intelligent person could have planned such a bungled attempt to change things at the ashram, for this is what Ramnath believed Prabhu had aimed to do. He had been talking a lot about all the sinful things there from monetary embezzlement and corruption to the sale of privileges, inmates going to brothels in Puttaparthi and bringing liquor into the ashram and such things. Until then, I had no idea of the latter, though I already personally knew of embezzlements (especially by Mr. N. Suri) and cheating with certain privileges.
Transcript: "Ramu knows well the grandson of the Rani of Chincholi.
Ramu has cross-checked info from Vijay Prabhu and confirms that there are brothels in Puttaparthi as well as drugs, drink etc. Even drink was found in the ashram (bottles of rum) after the killings of June 6.
V. Prabhu was honest and like any of us, but got overheated about the corruption etc."
Note how this shows a quite different side of Vijay Prabhu to that spread by Sai Baba's younger brother - Janakiramiah - and other ashram officials. That brothels exist - even run by a close devotee - Samba Shiva Rao - who sits on the veranda as VIPs has been reported. See here
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