A public interest petition has been filed in the High Court seeking a CBI probe into alleged irregularities committed by members of Sri Satya Sai Baba Central Trust and into the demise of Bhagawan Sri Satya Sai Baba at Puttaparthi in April last year.
The petitioner, K Ramesh, a Satya Sai Baba devotee and businessman here, has requested the court to direct the state government to dissolve the present trust board and to create an autonomous body for management of trust affairs on the lines of the TTD (Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams) by making suitable amendments to the provisions of the AP Endowments Act.
He wanted investigation into the alleged huge financial irregularities of the trust, including the incidents of transfer of cash from Prasanthi Nilayam after the declaration of death of Satya Sai Baba, conducted under the direct supervision of the High Court.
Besides, he wanted the court to appoint an ad hoc body consisting of a retired chief justice of any High Court to manage the affairs of the trust and to efficiently spend the donations worth crores of rupees and other valuables like gold, silver and diamonds for public charitable and religious schemes as envisaged by the baba. The petitioner submitted that as per an estimate of the income tax department the trust is worth more than ` 40,000 crore as it has been running charitable schemes and institutions such as an airport, a university complex, superspeciality hospital, general hospital, hill-view stadium, indoor sports stadium, world religious museum, planetarium, music college and a complex at White Field in Bangalore. Besides, there are about 1,200 Satya Sai Baba Centres in 180 countries engaged in health and cultural activities.
Recently, Satyajit, a close confidant of baba, released the original Declaration/Will signed by Satya Sai Baba stating that Baba was only a trustee of the contributions made by the devotees and the contributions and assets were to be used only for public charitable purposes. The state’s chief secretary, secretary to endowments, DGP, CBI and Satya Sai Central Trust have been named as respondents.