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BBC's The Secret Swami Captures Top Officials Covering Up
Though leaving much unexplored, the BBC documentary The Secret Swami quesions India's political maturity. It also questions the moral and spiritual immaturity of major followers of India's top guru Sai Baba, both East and West.
An earlier article revised. April 4th, 2007 by Barry Pittard, on the BBC's The Secret Swami documentary.
"In exposing a dangerous and influential cult, the BBC's documentary The Secret Swami is plucky and perceptive. Canada’s national broadcaster CBC was waylaid by hundreds of phone calls and emails by Sai Baba devotees, both before and after the screenings of the documentary in Canada. The program host said on air “We stand by the professionalism of our BBC colleagues”.
"Former Home Secretary of Sai Baba’s state Andhra Pradesh, V.P.B. Nair, tells the cameras that the police killings in Sai Baba’s private quarters in June 1993 were “absolutely cold-blooded murder,” and that CID investigations, which were suppressed, showed many lies and cover-ups. He is seeking to re-open the case".
Confronted by Tanya Datta, Murali Manohar Joshi, one of the most powerful ministers in the since-defeated Vajpayee government, soon loses his temper, jabbing away with pointed finger at Ms Datta, accusing the BBC and people in England of plotting against Sai Baba, A.B. Vajpayee and P.N. Bhagawati (a key Central Trust member and former Chief Justice of India). He arrogantly shouts at her,
“No, no, no… You don’t know the meaning of interviewing a minister in my capacity, as a minister of my stature.”
The BBC's Tanya Datta's "vulnerability in the face of an arch bully is touching, and she shows
some courage but tough interviewers would not have put up with Murali Manohar Joshi's evasiveness. Surely, it would have been better had Ms Datta not tried to defend the BBC and herself but rather firmly stated the worldwide nature of the serious evidence that keeps on coming. At least, Joshi’s arrogant evasion of the BBC’s totally fair question about Indian Government accountability was unmasked for the world to see".
Billionaire founder of the Hard Rock and House of Blues chains, Isaac Tigrett says,
“He could go out and murder someone tomorrow.”
Tanya Datta probes,
“Does that mean that some part of you believes there could be some truth to the rumours?” Tigrett replies,
“Oh, absolutely I believe there is truth to the rumours.”