Press Esc to close
Friday 27 March 2015
News updated at 7:25 AM IST
Weather
Max: 34.5°C
Min : 22.3°C
In Bengaluru
Sunny day

Nithyananda feted at Mahakumbh

Sanjay Pandey, Lucknow, Feb 13, 2013, DHNS:

Tainted self-styled godman’s elevation by prominent akhara kicks up a row

:Allahabad: Swami Nithyananda at the bank of the 'Sangam' to take a holy dip on the occassion of 'Mauni Amavasya,' considered most auspicious day during the Maha Kumbh Mela in Allahabad on Sunday. PTI Photo

Now, sex scandal-tainted Swami Nityananda can also take part in the “shahi snan” (royal bath) at the Sangam during the ongoing Mahakumbh with top saints from the “akharas” (different sects of sadhus) on the occasion of Basant Panchami on Friday.

The self-styled godman was clandestinely conferred the title of “Mahamandaleshwar” by the Panchayati Akhara Mahanirvani, a prominent akhara, at a closed ceremony in its camp on Tuesday.

The title enables Nityananda to sit atop a chariot and take the holy dip in the Sangam waters. The function in which Nityananda was anointed, was a closely guarded secret and the other akharas were not informed about it. Nor were the Mahakumbh officials invited as per tradition, according to sources. 

The anointment triggered a wave of protests from other akharas and saints though the Mahanirvani akhara strongly defended its action.

“Nityananda may have been facing charges,  but it is his personal life and we have nothing to do with that. We should keep in mind that the charges have not ye been proved,” Mahant Ravindra Puri, the secretary of the Mahanirvani akhara, said.

The mahant said Nityananda had been conferred the title to “bridge the North-South divide” among saints and sadhus. “The saints from the Southern India often complain that they are not conferred important titles and are ignored... we have tried to redress their grievances,” Puri said.

Many others, however, did not approve of the conferring of such an important title on a controversial saint like Nityananda and said that it would set a “bad precedent” and convey a “bad impression” of the saint samaj among the people.

“Though it is the prerogative of the akharas to confer the title of Mahamandaleshwar, one has to see whether the person is fit for the same. The title is given to the saints, who have selflessly  served the mankind. Nityananda does not deserve the title,” said Narendra Giri, the mahant of Niranjani akhara. Spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravishankar also criticised the conferment of the title on Nityananda.

Nityananda landed in a major controversy after a video showing him hugging and kissing an actor from South was broadcast by a TV channel three years ago. He was later arrested in Himachal Pradesh and had to spend 52 days in jail before being released on bail. He is currently camping at the Mahakumbh and had also taken the holy dip on the occasion of Mauni Amavasya.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
An Auto driver seen upset outside theTV showroom as he was watching...

An Auto driver seen upset outside theTV showroom as he was watching...

Angry cricket fans burn the posters of Virat Kohli and Bollywood...

Angry cricket fans burn the posters of Virat Kohli and Bollywood...

Indian cricket fans react as India bats against Australia during their...

Indian cricket fans react as India bats against Australia during their...

Indian supporters wait in the stands following their team's...

Indian supporters wait in the stands following their team's...

India's Virat Kohli (C) and team mates react after Australia won their...

India's Virat Kohli (C) and team mates react after Australia won their...

India's batsmen Umesh Yadav (L) and Mohammed Shami walk off the...

India's batsmen Umesh Yadav (L) and Mohammed Shami walk off the...

Australia's teammates look at India's batsmen Umesh Yadav's face after his...

Australia's teammates look at India's batsmen Umesh Yadav's face after his...

Australian team mates react after they won their Cricket World Cup semi-final...

Australian team mates react after they won their Cricket World Cup semi-final...

Actress and newly appointed AICC National Spokesperson Kushboo...

Actress and newly appointed AICC National Spokesperson Kushboo...

Saina Nehwal at India Open...

Saina Nehwal at India Open...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523