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Police Probe Pune Commune Affairs

Is there any confirmation that 6 Western sannyasins from the Inner Circle have left India suddenly? It does seem that some members of the 21 have left India recently. Some leave anyway at this season, and of course a few do not spend much time in India anyway, but more than usual have left, and quite suddenly it seems. Garimo does remain in Poona, and has been a major commune administrator fo many years.

The Pune commune does seem to be passing through unusual times. The Indian Express, from 27th February, ran this story which we reprint below. We urge however readers to keep an open mind. According to some within India the enquiry being initiated by the Pune police special branch reflects the power of the Indian sannyasins in Delhi, and their high-powered connections with the Indian governing elite, including the Prime Minister and members of the judiciary, rather than anything else. Some within the commune say all is as it was, the programme continues, life still has qualities so elusive elsewhere. For sure Garimo is still there, and she has been one of the major temporal administrators in the Commune for many years.

The so-called probe would certainly suit the agenda of the Delhi sannyasins, which seems to be to replace the present temporal commune management, which they see as anything less than devotional, and basically financially motivated. Such a view of the present management seems over-simplistic to say the least. Also should the present temporal management be removed, presumably they feel only they could replace it!!

Some comments taken from the Osho beyond bondage chat room, we have also reposted on our community noticeboard, for those further interested. Once again it is good to remain sceptical of all this material until more facts emerge. We will keep readers up to date with this story.

(Sannyasnews Editorial Board)

Probe into Osho Commune
(from Indian Express News Service )
Pune, February 26:

The special branch of the Pune Police Commissionerate has been asked by the Central Government to conduct an inquiry into the activities of some of the prominent members of the Osho Commune International, who are an integral part of the inner circle. The international affairs of the Osho movement is controlled by a 21-member inner circle claimed to have been appointed by the guru before his death in 1990, the majority of them being overseas disciples. The composition of the inner circle has undergone a radical change over the years with many of its members resigning.. The present circle is led and controlled by Canadian disciple Michael O’Byrne alias Swami Jayesh.
The inner circle, which functions from the commune in Pune, has no legal
status, but its decisions are scrupulously adhered to by all the legal bodies which are part of the movement, including a dozen-odd trusts in India, a foundation in Zurich, Switzerland and a company in New York, USA.

Deputy Commissioner of Police, special branch, Sanjeev Varma, who is conducting the inquiry, refused to divulge details. “I can only say that we are carrying out the inquiry and submitting the report to the central government, which has not set any time frame”, he said. It may be recalled that, in February 2000, Sandeep Khardekar, the then state organiser of Patit Pawan Sanghatana (PPS) had demanded an inquiry into the commune affairs, alleging that national interest was being compromised due to the surreptitious activities of the commune. He had alleged that foreigners overstayed in Koregaon Park, despite expiry of their visas, which was confirmed by the Foreign Branch of the Pune Police Commissionerate.

Khardekar had also alleged that heavy fees for therapies conducted at the commune in Pune were collected abroad, thus depriving the country of foreign exchange.

Preliminary information received by the PPS from the charity commissionerate showed that the Osho trusts in India have Indian trustees, but the de facto power is vested in a coterie of foreigners led by Canadian Swami Jayesh.