Student during the 1993 murders reports on the events as perceived by him and his batch

This is one of numerous mails sent to me by former students of Sathya Sai Baba after agreement on strict confidentiality of the identiy of the sender due to vulnerability to harassment and worse by Sai Baba devotees and people hired to spy on and silence any who spoke out. This is about the 1993 murders in the Prashanthi mandir:-

To: Robert <>
Re: Thanks for comment

Hello Mr Priddy,
                         Hope you are doing well. I was a bachelors student at the Whitefield campus when the 1993 murders happened. Sairam was known to be a jovial, mischievous type of guy. He was good in English and was reputed to have been a "form boy" at one time giving speeches. At the time of the summer course, he had already completed his post graduation. In those days, it wasn't unusual for old students to show up for the summer course. It was odd that his badge had just the letter 'K' and me and a couple of friends talked about it and laughed it off.

On the day the murders happened, we were summoned to the prayer hall in the hostel just as we were about to leave for the college in the morning. Mr Anil Kumar made the announcement that there was a scuffle at Prashanti Nilayam last night and that it had resulted in a the deaths of Radha Krishan and Sai Kumar Mahajan. Mahajan was a Post Graduate student. His family had already suffered a loss a while ago as his father had passed away.

College was dismissed for the day. For the rest of the day, we were at the hostel talking to each other and absorbing the news as it came in. At that time, it was not known who the attackers were and we were all wondering what the security had been up-to. Slowly, news came in that it was all an inside job and as the names of the attackers were revealed, we were all in a state of shock and disbelief.

There have been several versions of what happened that day and the motives behind it. The version that I heard at that time was that the attackers set out to attack Sai Baba. Radhakrishna and Mahajan got in the way, so they were killed. Then they reached Sai Baba's room.

Here, there are again 2 different versions of what happened next. One is that Sai Baba was tipped off about the attackers and he fled to the garage before they reached his room and hid there. Another version is that the attackers reached Sai Baba's room, he shouted at them "what do you think you are doing" or some such thing and they chickened out and did not go ahead and attack him as they had initially planned. This is a plausible theory because these were all not professional killers but ex students and perhaps the enormity of what they were about to do hit home and they froze momentarily. So, in that moment Sai Baba may have closed the door on them and fled to the garage. I heard that he was scared, pacing up and down shirtless on the balcony and imploring people to do something about the situation. So much so for the supreme protector of the world!

We were told that the Police shot dead the attackers in self defense upon opening the door to Sai Baba's room. But we know that it is most likely a fabrication. It isn't uncommon for the Police in India to kill people in cold blood and then claim that they killed them in self defense. "Fake encounters" are dime a dozen and no one with common sense takes the words of the police at face value. You may take a look at this recent article for the latest instance of a high profile "encounter"

As for the motives of the attackers, one common thread among them was that most of them were ex students and no longer in the good graces of Sai Baba. As is very well known, it is his habit to ignore the very existence of people who were once close to him. I heard E.K. Suresh Kumar used to make the Vibhuti balls that Sai Baba carries around during Darshan. At that time he was part of the team that was in charge of security in Prashanti Nilayam. From what I heard he. was in a state of limbo, with no employment and no revenue and only empty promises by Sai Baba about finding him a job.

A few months later, Vijay Prabhu, brother of Suresh Prabhu and believed to be part of the group of attackers, was nabbed in a neighboring state. But what happened after that, no one knows. It is a great mystery to me if this man was ever questioned about the motives behind the attacks and what he revealed.
Here is the man who most likely knows what happened but no one, not even the investigative media questioned him! I suspect his silence was bought in return for his life and that of his family which lived in Prashanti Nilayam.

It has been many years since these incidents happened but I must say Sai Baba still has worshippers because they are good at deluding themselves! "This is just a leela of Swami to seperate the wheat from the chaff" was the explanation given at that time. Never mind that lives were lost due to this so called leela. And today, they still worship him as he goes around in a wheel chair looking clueless and helpless. The power of self delusion is supreme indeed!

This is the raw source info., (only the name of sender and exact e-mail address are altered)
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Date: Sun, 29 Aug 2010 21:32:33 -0700 (PDT)
From: t… t... <z******>
Subject: Re: Thanks for comment
To: Robert Priddy <>
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