Nithyananda with his rape accuser Aarthi Rao

Rape Victim Thought She Was ‘Having Sex With God’ — More on Nithyananda Rape Case

This is arguably the most famous rape case in the world today.
It involves a famous Indian guru who allegedly “raped” his disciple, not by forcing her to have sex, but by telling her that sex with him would lead to spiritual enlightenment.  She submitted to his sexual teachings, she claims, because she believed he was God.
Once she concluded he was not, she realized she had been raped.
Today, Nithyananda Swami stands criminally accused of raping Aarthi Rao, a married woman, who claims the holy man kept luring her back to his ashram where he raped her over a period of years.  The alleged rapes occurred more than 40 times over a five year period.
Aarthi Rao was not forcibly raped. She was deceived into having sex with a man she believed was God incarnate.
During the period of the alleged rapes, Aarthi was married and living in the USA. She had to leave home and her husband to travel to India and stay at the holy man’s ashram.  She chose not to tell her husband that she was having sex with her guru.  He was not a follower of Nithyananda. He has separated from her after the criminal charges were made against Nithyananda.
Aarthi Rao claims she realized she was raped after she found that Nithyananda had sex with another female disciple.
The rape case has been ongoing for eight years which is not necessarily long in the Indian criminal justice system.  In the meantime, Nithyananda may have fled the jurisdiction of the court and the case is proceeding with him in absentia. It is not clear if he will return to court for sentencing if convicted.  He recently sought asylum in Ecuador and was denied. His present whereabouts are unknown.
Nithyananda claims to have millions of followers in India and around the world.
For his defense, Nithyananda is not arguing that it is not rape if a married woman voluntarily has sex even under the mistaken belief that the man is God.
His defense is:
  1. He never had sex with the woman.
  2. He never had sex in this life, being a lifelong monk
  3. That he in incapable of having sex because he is impotent
  4. Aarthi Rao is a promiscuous woman.
  5. She has contagious herpes
  6. Nithyananda is STD-free
Shortly after the criminal case against Nithyananda in India commenced, Aarthi told Ann Arbor police that “Nithyananda is not only a sexual predator and a con artist but also the leader of a dangerous Cult and poses a serious threat to American citizens. I am one of several victims raped and abused by Nithyananda. I urge you to investigate the fraud, sexual abuse, money laundering and racketeering affairs of Nithyananda Swami.” Police never commenced a formal investigation.
Nithyananda, in turn, sued her in Michigan civil court. As part of that litigation, the court reportedly issued a subpoena to release her medical records.  These records reveal Aarthi suffered from multiple STDs  including recurrent genital herpes, Herpes Simplex Virus I and II and Herpes Gladiatorum, and had been undergoing treatment from a University of Michigan hospital since at least 2004.
One expert witness, retained by Nithyananda, stated that Aarthi Rao is “highly infectious and contagious, whether she is having an outbreak or not, and even if her infection is asymptomatic.”

Nithyananda also submitted results of an examination which showed he had no venereal diseases himself.

Nithyananda’s supporters argue this is evidence of his innocence:

“She claimed she was raped over 40 times over 5 years while she herself has been suffering from incurable, highly contagious STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) since at least 2004, while Sri Nithyananda Swami has no STD”, write his supporters on a pro-Nithyananda website.

Aarthi Rao claims the medical records are fake.

Nithyananda produced an affidavit from Christine Ward Krause MD, who claims she diagnosed and treated Aarthi and that the medical records are authentic.

In India, these medical reports were reportedly accepted by the court over the objections of the prosecution.  It took four years and went to the Supreme Court of India which upheld the High Court order for the inclusion of medical reports for Aarthi Rao in the criminal case.

Nithyananda also underwent an examination at the Bangalore Medical College and it was determined he is impotent and has an extremely low testosterone count. and the hormonal level of a child.
The report shows testosterone levels at 12.50 ng/dl, whereas the normal male should record 249 ng/dl.  It also stated that Nithyananda suffers from hypogonadism (reduction or absence of hormone secretion or other physiological activity of the gonads).
However, reportedly, Nithyananda refused to take an intracavernosal injection while undergoing the penile Doppler study, stating that he would suffer a cardiac arrest.  The intracavernosal injection would determine if he could have an erection.
Nithyananda claimed he had been promised that injecting of drugs to facilitate arousal would not be conducted, since he is a monk.
Since the official potency tests were disputed, Nithyananda retained a spate of experts to declare he is impotent.
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The result of the Michigan civil lawsuit ended with a default judgment [she did not defend the case] against Aarthi Rao for $460,000. She filed bankruptcy and apparently the judgement will not be paid.

Raped by God

Perhaps the most telling evidence is Aarthi Rao’s on the record statements. She claims she believed Nithyananda was “not just an enlightened master, but an avatar and incarnation.”

In other words, she thought he was God.  And hence having sex with him, even though she was a married woman, was not adultery but a divine spiritual experience.  She said she was told by Nithyananda that she was the “chosen one” and the only woman he was having sex with.  However, she said she was told by Nithyananda’s driver that Nithyananda was having sex with many women.

She then placed a hidden camera in his room, she said, and caught him having sex with one of his followers, who happened to be a famous actress [Rajnita.]

Aarthi released the sex tape to the media and it became a national scandal.  Nithyananda claims the video is a morphed and doctored video.

Rajnita also denied the tape’s authenticity. Unlike Aarthi Rao, Rajnita remains with her guru, and apparently left her acting career to become a nun and lives in one of Nithyananda’s ashrams.

Aarthi Rao claims she placed a hidden camera in Nithyananda’s bedroom and discovered he was having sex with the actress Rajnita.

Perhaps the best way to understand the case is to hear from the alleged rape victim, Aarthi:

“In the ashram I was made to feel …  I am a very special and spiritual person…. . And as I realized later, with very subtle mind manipulation techniques, I was led to drop my reasoning mind ….  and convinced me that I was the ‘chosen one,’ I was [told I was] the only one who was fortunate to be enlightened with a very special Vedic technique. And he called that as the path of … ‘loving the divine as the Beloved.’ [having sex with him while considering him to be God]. It was very confusing and shocking at first. But with his glib talks, he completely convinced me to accept and trust the master and surrender completely to become enlightened. [by having sex with him.]

“In 2009 … another member….  told me that Nithyananda was abusing many women and men under the guise of enlightenment, but I refuse to believe him….. later in 2009, once again …. Lenin, Kirpan [Nithyananda’s driver] told me that there were various misdeeds happening in the ashram. And sexual abuse was also happening under the guise of enlightenment. …. I refused to believe…..

“…. I simply could not accept what Lenin had told me that I absolutely could not doubt Nithyananda. That was the extent of trust and faith I had …

“From 2005 when I was first abused sexually until 2009, there were so many incidents that I had experienced and witness for which…  any ordinary person would find ….objectionable. Like beating Brahmacharis [monastic novices]. I have seen Brahmacharis being beaten black and blue by Nithyananda until the walking stick broke.

“I myself have been slapped during abuses. And yet everything was accepted as the Master’s way of removing our bad karma as the Master’s way of using a Zen technique for enlightenment and as a part for spiritual progress. We were made to accept it and drop our ego in order to accept it. For five years, I refused to believe anything negative … I saw everything I experienced. I was made to accept it as a necessary part of a spiritual process. And yet, suddenly, there are all these allegations about him. I simply could not accept it.

“When Lenin…   challenged me to verify it for myself….  I decided to verify with a hidden camera in the tennis room. I … asked permission to place an air purifier in his room in December 2009. The air purifier came with a hidden camera, which was motion activated.

“After two days when I removed the air purifier and saw the videos [of Nithyananda having sex with Rajnita]…  I was devastated.  I simply could not believe what I was seeing. Even if anybody had brought the same video and showed it to me, I would have …. thought it to be doctored, morphed or some conspiracy to defame the Swami but in this case, the truth was staring at me in my face, and I couldn’t deny it anymore….  My whole world came shattering down.

“I gave the videos to Lenin to watch it for himself. And then I left.  I left the ashram and the mission once and for all.  But I was deeply traumatized by shame and guilt about what had happened to me. I could not understand how this had happened to me.  And I could not stand the pain of my trust having been betrayed

“I contemplated suicide because it was unbearable to live with the guilt and the shame. I was unable to talk to my family or anybody. But it was the loving support of my family that finally saved me. They consoled me and advised me to forget my past and move on with my life.

“But the question in me was a rising again and again. How could this happen to me? How an educated woman coming from a respectable family, raised in the best traditions of a Brahmin family, how could this happen to me? I had no answers, and I was searching and I came across experiences of cult victims, real life stories of women like me, who are victims of abuse and occult.

“I understood what had happened to me.  I understood how my deep trust and my sacred beliefs as a Hindu, my belief in the Guru [system] about guru Bhakti [loving the guru as God] and Guru seva [serving the guru as God] how they were exploited to abuse me and take advantage of me sexually.

“And I understood that I too am a victim of a cult.  When I realized this is what had happened to me I understood the depth of psychological slavery I had fallen into for five long years.

“There is a research project published by cultic studies journal. And there are case studies of women who have been exploited, in the name of spirituality, abused sexually. And I read about women who came out after 20 years of slavery and abuse and occult.

“I understood what a big danger a cult can be. How it can be a real threat and a menace to the society.  I felt it was my moral responsibility to speak out. My conscience did not permit me to just forget everything and move on. I convinced my family and with their support, I came forward and complained to the Karnataka [police] and gave a truthful account of my experiences…..

“After investigating my complaint, and witness statements from many ex devotees who had served the mission for a long time, the Karnataka [prosecutors filed criminal rape]…. charges

“A  false case was filed against me in America…. [I was accused of] …  video morphing, blackmail, all kinds of horrible allegations against me. Not just me. Even my husband, who had absolutely nothing to do with the tenants or the mission was targeted for the simple reason that he supported me. When I gave the complaint it is extremely painful to remember how much I sacrificed my life. I gave up my career, threw away my job, lost all my income, ignored my family for years and spent day and night running from pillar to post just to popularize the [Nithyananda] …  and for that I have been rewarded with allegations of extortion. If I wanted to make money, I could have sued Nithyananda in the US for millions of dollars.

“In fact, lawyers were willing to fight for me for free.  Because they said it was a clear case of clergy abuse and cult abuse. But I refuse to file a lawsuit because I’m not interested in his tainted money, which comes from the blood and sweat of so many volunteers, organizers and donors. On the contrary, just fighting his false case,  I have spent my meager earning, meager savings. I’ve taken huge loans to pay the lawyer fees and bills, and I’m completely penniless on the streets with no help. No support the harassment….  My husband has shattered our marriage and separated us.  And I know this is not going to be the end of it.

“I know that they are going to do everything possible. even get a default judgment against me because I’m not able to defend myself anymore in the US and then misuse it to claim that I committed fraud against them in the US. I know that there are rumors being spread about me allegations and slander about my character as a woman. And I won’t be surprised if many more cases are filed. Now that I’ve come to the media my life is in grave danger and anything happens to me or my family, or any of the key witnesses Nithyananda and his supporters are responsible for it.

“The allegations of video morphing are allegations. That’s all I can say about it? I know the video is true. I would not have believed that if anybody had showed me but I know it’s true. It came from a camera that I placed.

“Of course, the forensic science lab has authenticated and found that there is no alteration or editing or morphing of any kind. Neither was there any body double, as stated….  . And other renowned forensic expert, Dr. Chandrasekaran …. reviewed the video in 2010 and he found no alteration or editing of any sort. ….

“My life has been totally destroyed. I  sometimes feel I have nothing to live for.  But I want to save myself for the trial. Just for one reason. So that the truth can be known. All the personal suffering and sacrifices of me and my family will be meaningful. If even one family is saved, if even one woman or youth is saved….

“I wish my life will be a lesson from which you will learn so that you will not make the same mistakes that I did. I wish you will never become a psychological slave of a cult. Because that’s the worst thing that can happen to you. You don’t even know that you are a slave. If you have to follow someone, please believe in God and follow only somebody who’s worthy of worship [whose] actions, matches words, somebody who walks the talk.

“Anyone who gives great discourses is not a real guru. Please do not make the same mistake. I know many who are still suffering silently, who have been unable to come out and speak like me. And I speak on behalf of all of them. Your life is precious. Please don’t throw it away. I have full faith in the judiciary. And I’m confident that once trial starts, the truth will be established. I hope and pray that the trial will begin very soon.”

***
Nithyananda still has many devoted followers, it appears. He has claimed he can perform miracles such as stopping the sunrise for 40 minutes, can make blind people see, and cows able to speak in Sanskrit and Tamil.
What he cannot do however is make this rape case go away.

 

About the author

Frank Parlato

Frank Report’s founder and lead writer Frank Parlato is one of the internet’s most acclaimed investigative journalists. His writing and investigations have helped expose major criminal organizations and scandals.

Frank’s work has been cited in major publications all over the world, including The New York Times, New York Post, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CNN, Rolling Stone, and more.

He is also the publisher and editor-in-chief of Artvoice, The Niagara Falls Reporter, Front Page and the South Buffalo News.

21 Comments

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Leave a Reply to Peaches Cancel reply

  • Please also investigate another predator guru who happens to be a friend of Nithyananda (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGTK7vr0TCo&t=148s). His name is Swami Vishwananda who was born in Rosehill, Mauritius in 1978. Vishwananda has built an ashram in central Germany and is known for his homosexuality. A large number of former brahmacharis (monks) have left the first time in 2008 when they exposed him of having sexual interaction with at least 15 monks. Vishwananda has a criminal record in Switzerland where he was sentenced to 4 months prison on probation (http://web.archive.org/web/20101108093537/http://sc.tagesanzeiger.ch/dyn/news/schweiz/762275.html ). You can contact Starfgericht Baselland in Liestal (Switzerland) if you need confirmation. He has stolen relics of saints in 25 churches and monasteries and brainwashed his 2 female Swiss devotees that Christ told him to steal the relics to safe them. Not so long ago some former male followers of the guru opened up about their experiences but one must be assuted that most of the suffered men have never spoken up and just disappeared. Here are some recordings where abused men speak about their experiences which they had in private with the guru:
    – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F5CUYHF_eos&feature=youtu.be&t=647 (https://falsevishwananda.wordpress.com/2019/10/26/ )
    – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cLReHEjjes&t=117s
    There are 2 French men who testify in their native language, subtitles are helpful to understand the content:
    – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olGBKkXqZ-I&t=10s
    – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ylnHGlDOHU

    You can see many similarities between both gurus who met frequently in the past. Vishwananda and Nthyananda both used to give darshan (blessings) by putting the thumb on the 3rd eye. Both are known for sexual exploitation and lies towards the devotees. Both exhibit charlatanic behaviour showing some superpowers to draw and manipulate devotees. The only difference between them seems to be that Nithyananda is on the run but Vishwananda continues building his empire in Germany (maybe due to less interest by the Germans/ westerners than it could have been in India). 

    Please help to investigate this guru and speak to the men who testified, the contact details are in the YT videos. This here should also be a warning to all who have considered to see Vishwananda since it is known that some former Nithyananda devotees joined Vishwananda in Germany. His official schedule can be found here: https://www.bhaktimarga.org/paramahamsa/calendar

  • Greetings,

    I had thought that it was very suspicious that such a confidential medical document about a person having a sexually transmitted disease would make its rounds on the internet. As seen below, the documents are fake. I think the accuser is quite credible.

  • —Rape Victim Thought She Was ‘Having Sex With God’

    If the alleged victim was not coerced via blackmail or threats of bodily harm other then believing Nithyananda is God was she raped?

    I believe women almost 99.5% of the time in rape cases. This is not a typical case. It’s an atypical case. I have have absolutely no opinion pertaining to the rape charges.

    Are there any female commentators who would like to give/share their opinion?

    I would greatly appreciate an opinion or perspective from a woman.

        • Peaches, as I have previously posted information about including links to research, rape survivors can also be trauma victims, and partly because of that have been shown to sometimes act counter to what we might expect. I think that is particularly the case when the perpetrator is in a position of power and authority, as we have seen in a number of recent cases.

          There are also some complex issues of consent that I addressed in an earlier comment. And I know it’s a fraught issue, but in a situation like that, I think it’s possible for a woman not to realize that a situation constituted rape, until she has gotten herself out of it and had to gain some perspective; that’s similar to what happened to a lot of the women involved in NXIVM and DOS.

  • Please put that Case # 12-0076-PZ in the Michigan Courts website and see. That court order was never passed. They should be prosecuted for making up those fake orders. Please find the order where that case was dismissed.

    https://courts.michigan.gov/opinions_orders/opinions_orders/pages/default.aspx?k=12-000776&s=All%20Opinions%20and%20Orders

    Also find the case history in this below link.
    https://courts.michigan.gov/opinions_orders/case_search/pages/default.aspx?SearchType=1&CaseNumber=317653&CourtType_CaseNumber=2

    The medical report is fake, court never passed any such order to release Arathi Rao’s medical records. They are liars and organization is fraud

  • Interesting how they made the medical records public. That is usually frowned upon, it’s called HIPAA.

    At least now we know who NiceGuy is, Mr. Can’t-Even-Get-It-Up-For-A-Phone-Call. LOL

    I don’t have much sympathy for this woman. Wasting all of that money to travel to India on a frequent basis, cheating on her husband, etc.

    This is NOT the most famous rape case in the world right now, it’s Weinstein. Just because a lot of Indians are following it does not make it “famous.” It’s still local. The Michigan police found it so earthshattering that they didn’t even open an investigation. Here’s a new development that I saw today: https://www.witf.org/2020/01/23/article-finds-child-sexual-abuse-in-the-amish-community/ They may be catching up with the Catholics.

    • Scott,
      “At least now we know who NiceGuy is, Mr. Can’t-Even-Get-It-Up-For-A-Phone-Call. LOL”

      I am confused. Why would you want a guy who comments on the Frank Report ad-nauseam to come on your show?

      Does your radio [it’s called a podcast] show have any standards?

      Frank Parlato or Joe O’Hara are understandable good guests, me not so much.

      Why would Joe O’Hara want to go on a podcast where every Tom, Dick, and Harry is invited? I’m a dick by the way. 😉

      • You’re not confused. You’re scared. LOL

        Yes, my show has standards. I have disinvited Hutchinson from ever being on the show. Everybody else is welcome. Remember, YOU are the one who said you would come on the show, until you chickened out. You tried to say you would come on only if Frank came on, thinking Frank would never come on. Then, when I told you that Frank had already been on, the only excuse you had left ws your total, abject cowardess. LOL

        I didn’t say you would be a good guest, only that you are welcome to come on, so I could rip you a new one! LOL

        O’Hara should want to come on the show to put out the truth. But he’s apparently as scared as you are! LOL

  • So much of blind faith and fear rules our minds and makes us desperate to follow such people.but what I fail to understand is how can the thought of having sex with god or even godly person be acceptable for anyone.

  • I just want to cite what I previously commented, that was also put up as part of the last post on this subject:

    “To begin with, I think it’s important to keep in mind that studies and research have shown that sexual assault and abuse victims often behave in ways that may seem counter-intuitive, particularly in terms of having later contact with perpetrators, that make it hard for laymen (and even law enforcement, courts and juries) to properly evaluate their claims.

    And in an unfamiliar culture like that of India, where what they call “godmen” like Nithyananda are as much of a fixture as, say, televangelists in the US, it may be particularly hard for us to make sense of, or evaluate, the relationship between someone who who may be viewed as the incarnation of a god, and a follower.

    I think there’s even an argument to be made that in the cultural context of India, there is such a power imbalance in any such relationship, that it’s almost akin to statutory rape. That may well even be why there is a long mainstream tradition of such gurus remaining celibate, in order to put a check on something so prone to abuse.”

    • AnonyMaker,

      I am a fan of yours.

      Warning: When you start citing your own writing, you are entering Shadowstate1958 territory.

About Frank Parlato

About Frank Parlato

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in major publications all over the world, including The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CNN, Fox News, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, and more.

Frank Parlato was the lead investigator and coordinating producer of Investigation Discovery's 2 hour blockbuster special 'The Lost Women of NXIVM.'

Frank Report is dedicated to Frank's investigative journalism and the pursuit of truth.

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