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Swami Nityananda gives first discourse after release from jail

Bangalore: Swami Nityananda, the godman involved in a sex scandal, gave his first public discourse after being released from jail on bail here on Sunday.

Speaking to his devotees for the first time in almost four months Nityananda spoke about his experience during his stay in prison.

Speaking amid a packed hall of devotees from across the country and abroad, Nityananda said he bears no hatred towards anyone.

Taking snipe at the media coverage over the sex scandal involving the Swami and an actress from the Southern film industry, Nityanand compared the coverage with the news of death of Michael Jackson.

“I heard from some devotee who was reporting to me (that) she had brought an article saying that in internet history only twice jamming has happened in the internet due to traffic, one Michael Jackson death, second Nityananda scandal,” said Nityananda.

Devotees were overwhelmed by the return of their master and turned up in huge numbers to show their support.

“I am very happy because I felt that we are very used to hear Swami-ji talking and many of us are practising his teachings and techniques of meditation. So to have him talk again is very good news for us,” said Chandrananda.

“As a devotee it has been a testing time not listening to swami-ji. Swami-ji is our life, like what he says, what he is going to teach us, those are the words we are looking forward to. So this was very hard time for us, last 80 days and now we want to listen to what he has to say,” said Arpit.

On June 13 Nityanand performed a self-purification rite by lighting fires all around him.

The swami was released from jail on June 12 after the Karnataka High Court granted him bail on June 11.

Nityananda, who was behind bars for over 50 days, is facing several criminal charges, including rape.

The godman, who has a sprawling ashram at Bidadi, about 30 km from Bangalore, was arrested from northern Himachal Pradesh state on April 21, more than a month after a TV channel telecast video footage showing him in a sexual act with a woman, believed to be a Tamil actress.

Nityananda was arrested on several criminal charges, including molestation, hurting religious sentiments and fraud.

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