29 Oct 2014

Why did Manoj Das keep mum in June 2013 with regard to the Seashore Chit Fund scam?

[It is not that Manoj Das did not know earlier about the chit fund scam of the Seashore group, the literary wing of which he was the adviser and for which he received one lakh rupees a month. Now he throws up his hands imploring the Heavens for justice and donates all that he has received to the Odisha Chief Minister’s Relief Fund, but what did he do when the Seashore group was publicly exposed as early as June 2013, one and a half year ago? Why did he keep mum at that time? And why did he continue to receive his honorarium? And why does he now create such a big scene as if he never knew anything about it? The following post, written by Subhas Chandra Pattanayak on 17 June, 2013, shows the nexus between writers like Manoj Das and corrupt business tycoons, who use the services of the former to establish their own credentials in the general public in order to draw unsuspecting investors to their fraudulent companies. – Bireshwar]

Posted on June 17, 2013 by Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik has, in his column in Sanchar, exposed such a thread in the matter of economic offenses committed by Prasant Das and his Seashore group of companies that every Oriya who prides in his/her language, writers and scribes, feels ashamed.
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28 Oct 2014

Manoj Das and the Seashore Chit Fund Scam

[Manoj Das is in the news again for the wrong reasons. This time it is for his association with the scam tainted chit fund company run by the Seashore group in Odisha. As usual he has pretended ignorance and donated the money that he received from the Seashore group (10 lakhs) to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. But is not that simply an eyewash to exonerate himself? Who will not “offer” or “donate” the money when the law finally catches up on him? We reproduce below some of the news items that have been posted on the web. – Bireshwar] 

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24 Oct 2014

Why Sell the Soul for a Mess of Pottage? – by Sampdas

The brief factual Aide-Memoire on the ongoing debate on the book of Peter Heehs titled “The Lives of Sri Aurobindo” could serve to focus on the fundamental issues concerning not just the Sri Aurobindo Ashram commune at Pondicherry but also the extended Ashram body of devotees, disciples and followers of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo – living in India as well as overseas.

Though a large majority of people are aware that there is trouble and mudslinging between those critical of Peter Heehs and those who defend him, the surprising thing is that both the groups have their epicentre at Pondicherry. The fact that the problem has taken a larger dimension about the way matters are handled by the management of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram leaves us in no doubt that all is not well over there.

For the purpose of clarity it is worth mentioning that all who have turned to Sri Aurobindo and The Mother are sadhaks – though not necessarily living physically in the precincts of the Pondicherry Ashram in buildings hired or otherwise. And the Ashram consists of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo and all those who have accepted them as embodiments of the Divine or as spiritual guides on the path of Integral Yoga, and who reach their offerings in physical or monetary form to the Masters through the Ashram Trust. Consistent with this fact, the Ashram Trust exists basically for providing the administrative and managerial support to look after the interests of The Mother, Sri Aurobindo, as well as to assure the basic necessities of life to the Ashram inmates and meet with the requests of the followers of the Masters for correspondence, reaching Blessings to them and logistics for their stay etc. The Ashram Trust (with the exception of The Mother) is neither a team of spiritual leaders nor its Trustees are spiritual successors to The Mother.
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17 Oct 2014

Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya’s letter regarding Peter Heehs

[Many senior sadhaks of the Ashram rang early warning bells and amply cautioned the Trustees with regard to Peter Heehs and Richard Hartz, the two American editors of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives. Jugal Kishore Mukherji’s [1] two long letters (1 & 2) addressed to the Trustees in 1986-87 have already been published on this site. We now publish a letter of Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya [2] dated July 1987, written in the same context and shortly after Jugal Kishore Mukherji’s letter of June 1987. His letter raises doubts and suspicion regarding the editing of the Archives & Research journal and the revised Edition of Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri. What is most interesting is that PKB foresaw twenty-one years back the insidious attack of “The Enemy Within”. He wrote the following:

“If the [my] suspicions could be proved they would not remain suspicions, they would become facts. But clever people know how to hide their true colour for a long time. That is why time is considered to be the best judge. So, until then, one should be on one’s guard, watch the suspects, and wait for the time when the truth reveals itself. If it is found that my suspicions are baseless, I shall be, too, happy to correct myself. It gives a very unpleasant feeling to be suspicious about people and things.” [emphasis added]

Well, Time has indeed proved to be the best judge when Peter Heehs revealed his true colours in 2008 with the publication of his derogatory book on Sri Aurobindo. If only the Trustees had paid heed to PKB’s early warning, how much trouble and controversy the Ashram Trustees could have averted, apart from nipping the mischief in the very bud! – Bireshwar]
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10 Oct 2014

Reply to the Rejoinder of Manoj Das to the Organiser – by Bireshwar Choudury

Manoj Das is the proverbial professor who has sold his soul to the Devil. So his staunch defence of the corrupt Trustees of Sri Aurobindo Ashram does not come as a surprise. He will keep on perorating praise for them because of very selfish ends such as getting the Ashram Trust to pay for his costly medical treatment – he has recently undergone knee replacement surgery and radiation therapy in corporate hospitals unlike the other inmates of the Ashram who are sent to Government Hospitals for medical treatment. He is also the official spokesperson of the Ashram Trust from which he derives enormous benefit from the point of view of publicity, which he cleverly uses to climb the ladder of literary fame. We have recently come to know that many of his stories have been actually picked up from various anthologies, so he does not even deserve the awards that have been bestowed on him.
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4 Oct 2014

Shiva Responds to Manoj Das's Rejoinder to the Organiser

Shiva’s Hearty Greetings
To Padamshree Prof Manoj-Das-ji
For His Characteristic Tosh Against the Author of “The Enemy Within”

You dismiss Mr Chari’s “The Enemy Within” as a “vomit” of the “nasty and naked lies fed to him by unauthorised hostile elements” – as if Mr Chari had no other sources within and outside for this thesis.

You claim he “swallowed” this “dirt” because he has “never visited the Ashram” – as if by a single visit one robotically “imbibes the spirit sublime dominating its air” and knows all about Sri Aurobindo, Mother, Their Yoga, Their Ashram.

But you are yourself a proof that even after “over fifty years” here one can swallow “nasty and naked lies” fed by elements hostile to Sri Aurobindo, Mother, Their Yoga, and Their Ashram!

For instance:—
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