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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Dec 2014

Succession row delaying news of dera head's ‘death’?

HT Correspondent  Nurmahal, January 31, 2014
First Published: 10:40 IST(31/1/2014) | Last Updated: 13:58 IST(31/1/2014)

A Hindustan Times investigation has revealed that the Divya Jyoti Jagriti Sansthan (DJJS) management is probably delaying breaking the news of Ashutosh Maharaj’s ‘death’ so as to resolve the succession row.

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The DJJS management has hired two portable mortuary chambers from Nurmahal-based Baba Bhooth Nath Mandir Committee. When the HT reporter called up committee caretaker Davinder Kumar on the pretext of hiring a mortuary machine, the latter said, “We have only two machines and both were hired by the Nurmahal dera on Wednesday.”

Sources in the dera disclosed that three factions were involved in the tussle over succession. One faction is led by Amarjit Singh, an old disciple of Ashutosh, known in the dera as Arvindanand. He is a resident of Bilga village in Nurmahal area.

Some local followers want Arvindanand to head the dera after Ashutosh, but the governing body of the DJJS, led by its president Adityanand, is backing another Ashutosh disciple, Narendranand.

Narendranand, whose original name is Narinder, a resident of Malout in Muktsar district, is presently part of the DJJS’s team in Delhi. A section of the followers is supporting another Ashutosh disciple, Suvidhanand, who has been living on the dera premises for the past many years. Suvidhanand, whose original name is Soni, hails from Shankar village in Jalandhar district. However, the DJJS management has denied any succession row. “The DJJS is governed by a governing body and Maharaj ji is our only guru. Only Maharaj ji will announce his successor after coming out of his ‘samadhi’,” said Jaya Bharti, head of the media wing of the sansthan.

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