Yoga chain founder breaks silence on rape charges

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Washington
  • Updated: Apr 01, 2015 23:59 IST

Bikram Choudhury, founder of a popular yoga chain, broke his silence on allegations of rape saying women love him and that he doesn’t need to use force to get sex.

“Women likes (sic) me, women loves (sic) me,” Choudhury told CNN, adding, “if I really wanted to be involved with the women I don’t need to assault” them.

Six women have filed lawsuits in US courts alleging Choudhury raped or assaulted them during or after training, with the most recent complaint coming in February.

His lawyers had then — when the complaint was filed — said the yoga guru would address the allegations “in a court of law, rather in in press and social media”.

They had also said then neither Choudhury nor his company had been served till then with any lawsuit, and the local police had also not found any evidence to charge him.

But the charges impacted his business, with franchises dropping their affiliation. Questions were being asked if Choudhury’s businesses, and the brand, would survive the allegations.

Arriving in the US in 1971, Kolkata-born Choudhury popularised a brand of yoga practiced in studios heated up to 105 degree Fahrenheit (40.5 Celsius).

It’s called Hot Yoga, and has many celeb fans.

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