Andhra Pradesh seeks Trust report over money seizure


Staff member
Hyderabad: Even as the government of Andhra Pradesh sought a detailed report from the Sathya Sai Trust over the recent seizure of Rs35 lakhs (Dh280,000) from one of its vehicles, the man accused, R J Ratnakar, has denied any wrong doing.

Ratnakar, one of the members of the trust as well as the nephew of Sai Baba, told reporters in Puttaparthy some people were indulging in mud slinging at the trust.

The police say they have issued notices to Ratnakar and another Trustee V. Srinivasan to come to the police station and give their statements in connection with the seizure of the huge amount of cash.

Cash seized

After the cash was seized from a vehicle travelling from Puttaparthy to Bangalore last week, the police arrested three people.

One of them revealed that two trustees were present when the money was handed to them by the chief security officer of Prashanti Nilayam.

Ratnakar claimed he had not received any such notice. "If any notice comes, the trust will sit and draft a reply to it," he said. When asked about the cash transfer case, he said the law would take its own course.


Tension rose near the Ashram in Puttaparthy today when activists from a local organisation clashed with supporters of Ratnakar. The protestors were demanding that the government should take over the Trust to prevent any misuse and siphoning off the money from the Trust.

The state government has already issued a notice to the Trust seeking details. The decision to seek the report was taken at a high-level meeting chaired by the Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy. This is being seen as a first move towards withdrawing the exemptions given to the Trust by the state government.

The Trust was exempted from submitting its accounts or providing information to any government department.


Sources said withdrawing some of the exemptions would make the Trust more transparent and accountable.

Rumours were rife about the huge deposits of cash, gold and diamonds in the home of Sai Baba. One theory was that it was the ill-gotten wealth of the politicians deposited with the Trust.