The Ecuadorian government has denied that it has granted asylum to self-styled Indian “godman” Nithyananda, wanted in India for alleged rape and child abduction, or sold him a Pacific island. In a statement, Ecuador’s interior ministry said it had, in fact, denied Nithyananda’s request for asylum., and he left the country for Haiti.
The statement read: “The government of Ecuador categorically denies the statement, wherever published, that self-styled Guru Nithyananda was given asylum by Ecuador or has been helped by the government of Ecuador in purchasing land or island in South America near from Ecuador.”
The statement continued: “Moreover, it should be known that Ecuador denied the request for refuge status made by Mr. Nithyananda. After the request was denied, Mr. Nithyananda left Ecuador, presumably on his way to Haiti.”
It said that all information “published in digital and print media in India is based on claims sourced from https://kailaasa.org, a website maintained by Mr. Nithyananda and his people as well as from inaccurate police reports.”
The interior ministry urged digital or print media sources to “refrain from citing Ecuador in any form in all pieces of information related to Mr. Nithyananda.”
The statement comes days after Nithyananda announced the creation of Kailaasa, a “Hindu homeland” on an island purchased from Ecuador. On Wednesday, the guru’s followers issued a clarification stating the island was a “cosmic and spiritual place, not necessarily physical.”
Nithyananda had allegedly fled India without a passport to save himself from rape charges registered against him in Karnataka.
Nithyananda’s real name is Rajashekharan and he is a native of Tamil Nadu. He opened an ashram near Bengaluru in the early 2000s. His teachings were said to be based on those of Osho Rajneesh.