In a massive admission, Congress leader DK Shivakumar on Friday admitted that he had met controversial self-styled godman Nithyananda seeking votes in 2018. He added that he knew Nithyananda for 20 years and had visited his ashram which falls under his constituency Kanakapura. He added that he had known that Nithyananda owned many Ashrams and other institutions.
"At the time of elections, Nityananda Ashram is a part of our parliamentary constituency and comes under my district. I know him for more than 20 years and he has his own Ashram and many big institutions. At some point in elections, I went to seek votes from his Ashram," he said to ANI.
Dismissing any ulterior motive in meeting Nithyananda, he added, "We meet many Dharma peethas and dharma gurus, many politicians. What is there in that? There are so many mutts in my constituency, so I keep on meeting them. I don't think I have met him since last year, during our Assembly elections."
D K Shivakumar who is currently out on bail was in judicial custody in Tihar jail in the ED case for alleged offenses under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). After Delhi High Court granted him bail, the Supreme Court has dismissed ED's plea challenging the bail order. Photos of DK Shivakumar meeting Nithyananda from 2018 have been circulating during the parliamentary elections in Kanakapura. Nithyananda has been named in the FIR of the alleged kidnapping of two women.
Petitioners Janardana Sharma and his wife told the Gujarat High Court on Monday that their two elder daughters, Lopamudra Janardhana Sharma (21) and Nandita (18) who were studying in Nithyananda's Yogini Sarvagyapeetham institution had refused to accompany them. Their younger minor-aged daughters, who have been rescued by the couple, were allegedly kidnapped and kept in illegal confinement for more than two weeks, claim the parents after officials of the institute allegedly refused to let them meet their daughters. The couple has sought the court's direction to the police as well the institute's authorities to produce their other daughters in court as they have allegedly been 'illegally confined' and hand them over to the parents. Gujarat High Court set a deadline of November 26 to present the two victims Nanditha Janardhana Sharma (Nityanandita) and Lopamudra Janardhana Sharma (Tatvapriya) before the court.