14 Feb 2012

Trustees Cancel Vijay Poddar's Talk

The Trustees of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram called off Vijay Poddar's talk on the Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs. Rattled that the talk may expose the book to a larger audience in the Ashram, the Trustees requested Vijay Poddar to cancel his presentation. The talk would have created a greater awareness on the book both from the point of view of its malafide intention and dubious scholarship. It would have made a large number of Ashramites look askance at the Trustees regarding their exact position vis a vis the book. Do they support it or not? Do they approve of it or not? If they do, why don't they declare their praise and admiration for Peter Heehs. And if they don't, why don't they condemn it outright? Why this duplicitous silence! And why gag the efforts of one of the most intelligent students of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Centre of Education to throw light on it? Vijay Poddar happens to be a senior teacher at the SAICE apart from holding a position of authority in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Society, which has hundreds of centres in India and abroad. Both Ashramites and devotees and disciples from outside Pondicherry hold him in great esteem and would have been  glad to know his opinion on the book that has rocked the Ashram since the last four years. His opinion need not be officially accepted by the Trustees, but why curtail his freedom of expression, especially when they themselves don't know what to say, think or do!

Bireshwar Choudhury

1 comment:

  1. I understand that a few days ago he had made a detailed presentation to the trustees in the Trust Office. Can we have some idea about its contents and the views of the officials? Thanks.