CNN might want dig a little harder when vetting its guests, some critics are charging. On Monday evening, the Cable News Network had as a guest Yogi Bhajan, who was identified as a leader of American Sihks. That alarmed some people in the Sihk community, says a source, where Bhajan is a highly controversial figure and head of a group called 3HO, an organization that has been linked with money laundering and drug dealing, and sexual harassment of its female members.
"I receive constant complaints by leaders in the Sikh community who have denounced this man," says Rick Ross, a consultant who deals with cults and controversial religions. Ross has posted massive documentation outlining the various allegations against 3HO on his Web site, www.culteducation.com.
A CNN spokeswoman says simply, "[CNN] asked [Yogi Bhajan] to appear as a guest for his reaction about the apparent hate crime committed in Mesa, Ariz. He was only asked about those events."
Ross says, "Some people in the Sikh community were not happy that this man was on CNN representing them. First, Scientology is apparently using this crisis to get across its message, and then Yogi Bhajan uses [the crisis]. It seems that religious fanatics of one group may be trying to exploit and benefit from the terrorist acts of another."