Fissures in ISKCON movement come out in open

Times of India/June 20, 2001

Kolkata: Hinting a vertical split in the international religious movement ISKCON, the sect's Kolkata unit on Tuesday came out in open with charges that a 'fictitious' committee floated by a group from ISKCON's global headquarters in Mayapur had 'sabotaged' the coveted annual Rath Yatra (chariot festival) scheduled to be held here on June 23.

President of ISKCON, Kolkata, Adridharan Das told a press meet here that the Rath Yatra, performed uninterrupted for the last 20 years by the Kolkata temple, had been thrown into disarray as another 'fraudulent management committee' claiming to represent the temple management had obtained permission from the city police for holding the festival.

"The Calcutta Police was thus duped into giving permission for the festival to an impostor group that claimed to represent the management of ISCKON, Kolkata running the temple here," Das alleged.

Jagadhartiya Das, secretary to co-director of ISKCON Mayapur, Dayaram Das, however, claimed that Adridharan Das had been suspended from the post of Kolkata president by the ISKCON Bureau (IB), the movement's highest legal authority based in Mumbai, on March 2.

"An eight-member committee headed by IB general secretary Gopal Krishna Goswami has already taken over the presidentship and this committee is in charge of holding this year's Rath Yatra," he said.

City police commissioner Sujoy Chakraborty, when contacted, said that he had permitted ISKCON to conduct the festival and was not concerned with the internal bickerings plaguing the movement. "Let them resolve their domestic dispute themselves," he said. (PTI)

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