Asaram's son performed black magic at ashram

The Times of India/October 9, 2009

Ahmedabad: A former personal assistant to godman Asaram Bapu's son spilled the beans on the murky goings on at the ashram in Motera before the inquiry commission on Thursday.

The former PA to Narayan Sai, Mahender Chawla (32), told the Justice DK Trivedi Commission that he had seen Asaram's son performing black magic amid corpses on three occasions.

This could be a very critical piece of evidence in the investigation of the mysterious death of two kids Dipesh and Abhishek Waghela near Motera Gurukul in July last year. Their parents had levelled charges against ashram authorities and the godman that a black magic ritual may have claimed their children's lives.

The case was investigated by CID (crime) and Justice Trivedi was asked to probe the case by the state government after much public furore demanding thorough probe.

Chawla, who belongs to Panipat and served in various ashrams founded by Asaram between 1999 and 2005, was personal assistant to Sai for four years.

On Thursday, in his deposition before the inquiry commission, Chawla said that he had first seen Sai performing black magic in presence of dead bodies on riverbed near Kalyan Ashram in Jhabua. Then he was a witness to similar ritual by Sai near Ranchi in Jharkhand and Himmatnagar. Sai, according to him, used to perform certain rituals by sitting beside the corpses covered with black cloth and a human skull kept on them. Chawla told the commission that because he was a witness to the rituals, Sai tried to woo him and made him his PA.

However, since he did not like this practice, he quit the sect in 2005 and settled in Thane as insurance consultant. Chawla also revealed that the reason for his leaving the ashram was that the spiritual gurus were duping people by selling ashram products to their followers at more than double the price. Moreover, he found that there was little chance for a sadhak' to get spiritual benefit as most of them were engaged in drudgery only.

Chawla's deposition continued till late Thursday evening before Justice Trivedi.

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