Fresh charges surface against Kochi yoga centre
E V Krishnakumar, a former teacher at Sivasakti Yoga Vidya Kendram, alleged that the centre used to function like a detention centre, and at times, drugs were administrated on violent inmates and their nude photos were taken to blackmail them.india Updated: Oct 06, 2017 20:37 IST
A controversial yoga centre in Kochi, which has been accused of illegally restraining and torturing women for marrying outside the faith, has come under more such allegations from a former employee.
E V Krishnakumar, a former teacher and ex-employee of Sivasakti Yoga Vidya Kendram, alleged that the centre used to function like a detention centre, and at times, drugs were administrated on violent inmates and their nude photos were taken to blackmail them.
He has filed a plea in the Kerala High Court requesting it to hear him while hearing the case.
Krishnakumar claimed that many parents used to forcibly bring their girls to centre for counselling and rigorous religious discourse. Others were recruited through the Hindu Helpline, a group formed by fringe Hindu elements to check alleged love jihad. He said often parents overlooked girls’ repeated complaints, hoping that they would be back in Hindu fold.
Earlier Shruti, a post-graduate hailing from north Kerala, and an Ayurveda doctor had filed similar complaints against the centre. Shruti said many girls were forced to undergo pregnancy tests and subjected to third-degree physical assaults. She said she was taken to the centre by her parents discreetly and she was forced to spend about a month at the centre and allowed to go after she agreed to marry a Hindu youth.
A Bengaluru-based woman has also alleged that she was forcefully restrained and physically assaulted at the yoga centre to stop her from marrying her Christian partner.
After the police filed a complaint against the centre, its director Manoj Guruji and the counsellors are absconding.
The State Women’s Commission has asked the Kochi (rural) SP to submit a report at the earliest.
Police said the centre was set up in 2012 after reports of alleged love jihad cases surfaced. Recently, the centre had claimed that it brought back 2,000 girls who married outside their faith in four years.