On Sunday I was in the studios of India TV for a live interview exposing Kumar Swami. They had called me because I had written about Kumar Swami and his newspaper advertisement in February 2011 already. The TV channel had asked Kumar Swami to join me in the studio for a discussion and he had first wanted to come but then refused and decided not to face me directly in the studios. On Monday I wrote a new diary entry about his new claims of having saved Bill Clinton’s career and more. On the same day I got to know that Kumar Swami was in the studios, explaining and defending himself and when India TV asked me if I wanted to talk to him over the phone, I agreed. He however refused talking to me. Yesterday evening they showed a two-hour-program asking him about a lot of controversies, his extraordinary claims and also about his son’s pictures with different girls.
The anchor asked him a lot of questions but, as the anchor pointed out in the end himself, he did not really get any direct answer. When he asked how Kumar Swami could claim he healed diseases like blood cancer, he answered that he did not claim that but that this was written in the scriptures. God said it was possible. We heard the same evasive reply from his mouth when he was asked about his claim that he would make unborn babies doctors or even prime ministers and presidents. He thus played with words to put off any responsibility. When people reported that they had given money and had done exactly what he had said but had not been cured, he simply said they had not done the right rituals or spoken the right Mantras.
When it came to the question how exactly he saved Bill Clinton’s career, people who expected him to be a personal friend of the former president were disappointed: he had not ever met him. Clinton had not asked him to save his career, Kumar Swami had decided to do rituals and said Mantras for Clinton a whole week long and thus saved him without the president ever even knowing about this. Wow! That sounds very different from what we heard before! And where is the proof that Kumar Swami’s ritual saved Clinton’s career and not some Christian nun praying or maybe the decision of politicians or judges?
The anchor moved on and started showing him some pictures of his son with different women. I actually don’t have any problem with the private life of his son but I thought it funny how he reacted – he did not seem to recognize his own son on many pictures which made the anchor say, it does not work like this, you cannot just tell he is not on that picture if you don’t like the picture! And in the background his own son admitted ‘Yes, that is me!’ It was just funny – they have proof, just accept it that your son is not living the life of a religious preacher, where is the problem?
Then talk came to the points that I had raised. The TV channel told again of the advertisements in which it was written that he had been honoured by the New Jersey Senate on behalf of Barack Obama. This was what I had written about in my very first diary entry about this man. In that time, asked by my readers to research, we wrote to New Jersey and received the answer that they had no information about any such certificates or honours. When presented with this statement, Kumar Swami yesterday gave a very funny explanation. He said I had gotten it all wrong, it was New York, not New Jersey, and he showed an article with proof that he had in fact been honoured in Nassau County, State of New York. That may very well be but in the initial newspaper advertisement it said ‘New Jersey’. Why, if you were honoured in New York, did you write New Jersey?
2011 Newspaper Advertisement – "Honoured in New Jersey"
I also had a look at the certificates and honours that he received in New York which are published on his blog. Looking at them I could not but notice a small detail that changes the complete sense of his statement: the New York certificates all show 29th April 2011 as a date, more than two months after the advertisement that you had published and the article that I had written, questioning whether this certificate really existed! I am a humble person and would normally not think that my writing made someone go to such high extents just to prove that I was wrong. But the whole story does look a bit funny, don’t you think?
Here is the copy of the certificate on his website:
29th April 2011 Certificate
I have never said that it is impossible that he was honoured by some American Senator and the pictures of his website show that he most probably was honoured there. Still however I believe it is wrong to say you were honoured ‘on behalf of Barack Obama’. Correct me if I am wrong but I have not seen Barack Obama’s name on any of the certificates nor did I see him on the pictures. You imply and make people believe Barack Obama is your devotee! This is what I believe is wrong. I would like to raise this issue even up to Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Queen Elizabeth II: Would they like to hear that here in India a religious guru is misusing their names to impress people in order to get money from them, publishing their names in his advertisement?
After showing a magazine with the proof of his certificates, Kumar Swami went on to say that I was a conman, who conned many people, robbed people, does blackmailing on the internet and that there are a lot of criminal charges and reports against me at the police. I would like to challenge his words and ask for proof for these statements.
I have never in my life been to the police station or court for any case. There is not any case of cheating, blackmailing, robbery or murder against me in any police station or court in India or abroad. If there were any such cases against me in any court of India, I doubt they would have let me keep my passport to travel around the world for the last eleven years! He will now need to proof his words with evidence. I am consulting my lawyers, I will send him a legal notice and plan to sue him for defamation.
You cannot just say this kind of thing while you are on air, on a national TV channel on a show which can be watched online all over the world and which millions of people actually do watch! You have no proof, your insult has no base but you try to give me a bad name all over the world. I am running a business, don’t you think that such statements could harm me?
I am not the one who owns Ferraris, BMWs, Hummers and Bentleys. I have a five-year-old Toyota Innova which we financed with a bank loan and which again and again has to go to the workshop to get fixed because it is getting old and broken. The money that I personally have, my company earns or my family has, can be checked very easily, is earned with hard and honest work and additionally supports poor children. Any money that our charity trust receives will not go to the construction of an enourmous temple but goes to support the children of our school which you can see if you just come here once and visit our school.
In our small primary school there are 150 children, about half of them from lower castes and half of them from upper castes, all learning together without any difference. We provide uniforms, food, books, education and health check-ups completely for free to all these children. Since 2007 we have our own school in our private building. All rooms are air-conditioned. We don’t receive any financial help from the government. Approximately 40% of the expenses for school and children are covered by donations of our sponsors and we are thankful to all our friends, sponsors and donors all over the world for their support. The remaining 60% are contributed by our own earning. My family and I work for this school without getting paid. My family’s and my source of income is the business which is done at the Ashram, while travelling or online through our website.
I am not interested in making millions or billions! If I had wanted to, I would have kept my profession of a religious preacher, a guru, and could have earned much more. Today however I don’t see myself even belonging to a religion and I am very happy with that. I believe there are too many people out there, making others believe they can cure their diseases and make them happy and healthy instantly.
If you want to believe in religion, please do. But why don’t you do your prayers or ceremonies in your home? You don’t need to go to a guru for that and pay him big amounts of money for doing rituals for you. This kind of gurus will just spend on their luxurious lives. I see it as my duty and actually the duty of every honest person to expose cheaters and fake gurus, people who claim the impossible in order to make more money. I believe the Indian society has still lots of work to do and speaking out on TV against Kumar Swami’s misinformation and false claims was just a small step on this way.