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Sexual abuse in Mata Amritanandamayi ashram?

Kochi, Feb 20 (): Mata Amritanandamayi former aide who has been with the God woman for two decades has published a book which alleges that there is sexual exploitation and physical abuse in the ashram located near Quilon. An Australian national Gail Tredwell changed her name to Gayatri after joining the ashram. She had left the ashram on her own in 1999. The book called Holy Hell and describes as her memoirs of devotion, faith and pure madness says that senior members had physical relationship among themselves and she too was sexually abused.

Mata’s Ashram spokesperson confirmed that the lady was an inmate till 1999 and even after leaving the place on her own, the organization had helped her. At the time of leaving she did not make any complaint. The spokesperson says that the contents defy logic and shocking.

Tredwell at the age of 19, joined as a personal attendant to Mata in 1978 and was close witness to see the young woman coming from a fishing village in Kerala evolved to a spiritual leader, with lakh of followers across the world, and whose trusts run a network of colleges and hospitals. In her search for God, Gaytri says that her early days gave such spiritual experience which she terms unforgettable. She says that the Mata was not the person she was before the public and in private she was as ordinary human beings and did not practices what she preached. She had a team of close followers who did all the dirty work for her. Repeated sexual abuse made Gaytri disillusioned and after she started to speak out, Mata threatened to expel her. Gaytri says she cringed when the organization explained that Mata’s family members richness was the income from the father’s fishing business.

Kumar of Mata Amrindamayi trust said there was no move to seek legal action on the author. The book was largely ignored by the media in Kerala. The reviews on Amazon.com about the book went viral. CPM owned newspaper editor posted on Facebook about the blackout of the book by Kerala media. Mata’s devotees run Amrita TV, a GEC with a little bit of time allotted to the propagation of Mata teachings.

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