Police raid Madurai Adheenam

Police raid Madurai Adheenam

Police today raided an ancient Saivaite Mutt here of which controversial self-styled godman Nithyananda has been made junior head, in connection with a case for alleged possession of tiger hide and ivory.

A team headed by Assistant Commissioner of Police Duraiswamy raided the 1500-year old Madurai Adheenam premises to verify whether tiger hide and ivory had been stored there as complained by Hindu Makkal Katchi leader Solaikannan in a petition before the Madras High Court bench here, police said.

The raid followed the high court order to register a case against Nithyanandha and two women disciples for allegedly using tiger hide as floor mat and ivory as pillow during a 'yogasana' training in the mutt Premises and investigate the alleged obscene activities of Nithaynandha and others.

The petitioner had also alleged that the disciples were given a "holy liquid", which made them feel light and go into dizzy and trance and wanted its content to be examined.

Nithyananda recently courted a fresh controversy after a US-based woman alleged he had sexually abused her for five years, following which police raided his ashram in Bidadi near Bangalore. He is already facing criminal charges including rape and released on bail recently in connection with an assault case.

His appointment as the junior pontiff of the Madurai Adheenam has evoked strong protests from various quarters including heads of several other mutts who have questioned his eligibility in view of pending cases against him.

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