Karnataka bid to nab Nityananda hits red tape — CBI wants his address
Interpol division of CBI wants info on nature of alleged crime, and legal proceedings, and more
The controversial self-proclaimed godman Nityananda Swamy is in the news again, with the Interpol wing of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) once again seeking clarifications from Karnataka’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID). The key issue is — where is he currently?
Nityananada is absconding from the country after being accused of involvement in various cases including rape.
Karnataka CID has requested the CBI's Interpol division to issue a Blue Corner Notice (BCN) and a Red Corner Notices (RCN) against the godman several times since 2020 and there has been little progress there. It is now said to be trying yet again to issue an RCN notice against Nityananda for the fourth time, to address the technical issues raised by the CBI.
Even the Supreme Court, in 2020, had directed the subordinate court to take the necessary steps to locate Bidadi Nityananda Swami and present him for trial. But police are yet to trace him.
Red and Blue corner notices
A Blue Corner Notice is typically issued to locate, identify, or obtain information about a suspect who has gone missing. A Red Collar Notice, on the other hand, is issued to seek the arrest or provisional arrest of convicted criminals with the intention of extradition.
After the CBI sent back the requested documents, seeking more information and evidence, the CID team prepared a comprehensive report. It also looked to specify the location of the abscondee.
Sources in the CID said the CBI has been seeking clarifications every time the former seeks an RCN or a BCN. The CID, which is conducting the investigation, answered the questions asked by the Interpol division comprehensively, the sources added.
The Interpol division has sought information on the case registered against Nityananda, the nature of the alleged crime, and the legal proceedings, and the CID has reportedly given the same. However, there are some ‘technical’ issues.
For instance, the CBI division has sought information on where Nityananda currently resides. There are also issues related to the chargesheets, order of conviction in the local courts, and so on. Many of these documents are in Kannada and translated versions reportedly fall short of being 100 per cent accurate.
Where is he?
The key point, according to an official with the CID, is that the documents do not clearly mention Nityananda's location. The godman is all over social media with his ‘United States of Kailasa’, but said Kailasa is nowhere on the map. Neither is it on any United Nations document.
More importantly, it is not among the countries that have extradition treaties with India; so the nation can’t ask any Interpol partner to arrest him or deport him to India.
It is believed that Kailasa is an island belonging to the South American nation of Ecuador. However, the Ecuador Embassy in India has already clarified that it has not helped Nityanand to purchase any island or land. In fact, it has denied his existence on its land.
Karnataka CID documents mention the location of Nityananda on an island connected to Ecuador but fail to offer any official proof. Hence, the CBI's Interpol wing has sent back the documents to CID, asking it for evidence to prove the location of the absconding godman.
Nithyananda Swamy, who had built his ashram near Bidadi, around 30 km away from Bengaluru, is absconding. Cases have been registered in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat against him for rape, fraud and intimidation of religious sentiments. The Karnataka and Gujarat police had written a letter to Interpol to issue RCN and BCN against him in a bid to nab him.