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A tough year after Sathya Sai Baba's death

Apr 24, 2012 06:30 AM IST India India

Puttaparthi: Exactly a year after Sathya Sai Baba passed away in Puttaparthi, his trust is struggling to retain its credibility.

A tough year for his trust and the small town of Puttaparthi, for the Sathya Sai Central trust the going has been rough, with income tax raids and allegations of corruption. Now the Baba's family has alleged mismanagement of the trust funds by his nephew Ratnakar Rahu who is a trust member.

Family Member of Sathya Sai Baba Ganapathy Raju said, "World over devotees have complete faith in the trust and they know that if the amount is donated to the trust it will be put properly to use but now they have lost all faith just because of one individual."

Raju has denied the charge and points out that the trust's financial report has been made public. "Ours is one of the most transparent trust in the country, our books are regularly audited," Raju.

Even as the family fights it out, the constant worry is that with the Baba dead, Puttaparthi will not be able to attract devotees. Business is already down in the small town of Puttaparthi.

Managing Director, Hotel Sai Renaissance Vijaya Sai Bolla said, "Because of Media reports that Sai Baba is a mystique many people are not coming to Puttaparthi."

"We come here every year because we know that Swamy is around," a devotee said.

From Income tax raids and allegations of financial mismanagement its been a tough year for the trust, but the onus now is on them to continue the work that was done by the trust under Sai Baba so that they can regain the credibility in front of the devotees.