2 Feb 2014

Dr. Kartikeshwar Patra (ex-M.P. from Balasore) replies to Prof. Manoj Das

(Translation of the Original in Odiya)

Aum Sri Ma

Respected Sir,                                                            20.12.2013

My regards. After receiving your letter and speaking to you on the phone, I felt inspired to reply to you. Therefore I thought that first I needed to let you know about a few things. Often one does not know what the truth is. So one does not hesitate to call the truth a lie because one tells lies out of fear of society and one even resorts to lies in the name of God. As Bacon says “Lie faceth God, shrinketh from mankind”. Your letter is coloured with lies in order to shake my conviction. Therefore, once again I appeal to you, please tell me – those who are revengeful towards others, are they real sadhaks? You have not answered this question. Why have they refused to put me up in the Ashram guest-houses? This too you have not answered. What offence have I committed before the trustees?

In order to bring back a harmonious atmosphere in the Ashram, I have sent a letter signed by 68 MPs. I have also gone in person to meet the trustees and to find out from them the truth regarding the complaints. That night at 10 pm I woke you up and over telephone let you know about the misconduct of the trustees.

When the question of racial abuse of Odiya devotes by Dr. Datta’s daughter Shoma was raised in the Odisha Assembly, that night you expressed great displeasure to me over telephone. You asked me, “Do you think the Ashram Trustees are bad?” I answered, “I have found out the truth about them from their behaviour towards me.” You then said, “OK” and put down the telephone.

They do not behave like Sadhaks. Only those who introspect can rectify their conduct. I think you are not introspecting much while you are supporting the Trustees, otherwise you would not have commented like that on Kumud-ben who had served the Mother and Sri Aurobindo for so long and later was the person in-charge of their belongings and Sacred Relics. You said that she was completely possessed by dark forces.

But I have personally felt the Mother’s force and Presence during my hour long discussion with her. Regarding the wrongdoings of the Ashram authorities she said that they were controlled by asuric forces. I do not dare to mention to you her comments on you. She had also mentioned about sexual harassment, financial mismanagement and the revengeful actions taken on the inmates who are protesting against the wrongdoings of the Trustees and also the misuse of the Ashram’s funds for hundred of court cases against them. Although she did not know me closely, yet she requested me to take some action regarding these shocking issues, and bring these issues to notice.

I wanted to first discuss everything with the trustees so that some remedial action could be taken in-house. But unfortunately I became the target of their wrath. I generally visit the Ashram three to four times a year and seek blessings at the Samadhi, but I have been denied that opportunity since I was not allowed to stay in any Ashram guest house.

I was not alone in collecting the signatures of the MPs but MP Jyoti Mirdha, who was educated in the Ashram, also joined hands with me.

Since you were the first person who claimed to have found out about 75 objectionable passages in Peter Heehs’ book about Sri Aurobindo, the great freedom fighter, sage and one of the greatest literary figures in the world and the pathfinder of a new age, may I know what prevented you from demanding an answer from the trustees of Sri Aurobindo Ashram? I cannot understand this. You have written that you make many small mistakes. So do I because “to err is human”. But I correct my mistakes through a process of introspection.

Thank you for the October 2013 issue of Auroville Today that you sent me along with your letter. On the 3rd page of that issue there was a note against me which stated that I did not provide the addresses and contact numbers of the MPs to the trustees. Therefore they did not reply to the MPs. Also some MPs had signed more than once.

I would like to point out that those MPs who have signed to protest against the misdeeds and corruption of the trustees are not little children who can easily be persuaded to do my bidding. I suggest that you prove that the signatures are false. I am convinced that you too are aiding the trustees in order to cover up their misdeeds. It is the duty of a student to correct the errors made by a teacher and not to blindly accept those errors which will show the teacher in bad light.

You have written in your letter that when you were in Delhi, 2 or 3 MPs wanted to meet you to tell that they had signed without knowing much about the matter. So they wanted to express their regret and you have also mentioned in the same letter that you met Sri Srikant Jena, MP-cum-Central Minister, to explain to him that I, Kartikeshwar, had actually persuaded the MPs to sign. I am truly convinced now that this is a vain attempt by you to cover up the truth.

You have written “Those whose appeal and request inspired you to take some steps are very cunning and their clever use of Sri Aurobindo’s name has naturally influenced you. But unfortunately they have become weapons in the hands of the dark forces. Many really bright, intelligent and scholarly people can also be controlled by dark forces. But these people who are influencing you can never claim to be in the same league”. I too belong to these not so great. I wrote this letter because I hold you in high regard.

An advanced sadhak once advised that one should always try to bring the straying sheep back to the flock even at the cost of one’s life. I want to follow this advice to the letter.

I have read the press-release of the MLA Thiru Ashok Ananda. He has laid stress on one point: the Trustees ordered that no Ashramite should approach the police or the media. The whole world is stunned by such a diktat.

One more point that the Trustees make is that if an administrator is appointed, the Ashram will not remain anymore a place for Sadhana. But truly speaking if an administrator is appointed, the sadhaks will be able to concentrate more on their work as they can approach someone for solving their problems, disputes and conflicts etc; therefore, in my view an administrator will not hamper any work or sadhana in the Ashram. All renowned religious institutions have administrators to oversee the smooth working of the place. And these administrators are answerable to the public. Not to agree to the appointment of an administrator is an attempt to subvert the democratic process and fundamental rights.

Since a short note has become rather long, please excuse me.

Yours affectionately

Kartikeshwar Patra

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