Today’s source of WTF news is thanks to a yoga centre in Ernakulam, Kerala, which has been acting as an anti-conversion clinic for Hindu women married to men from other religious. The Siva Sakti Yoga Centre has forcefully held 60 women captive and subjected them to torture and harassment. Why? Its agenda is to force these women to leave their ‘other religion’ husbands or to convert some women back to Hinduism.
According to a report, among the 60 women held captive, a 28-year-old woman has managed to escape and has filed a complaint with the police. She had been held captive for 22 days and was subject to continuous torture by the yoga centre’s management. The police have issued a closure notice to the centre and have arrested the director of the organisation. Four other accomplices mentioned by the complainant are absconding.
Meanwhile, a petition against the Siva Sakti Yoga Centre has been filed to the Kerala High Court by the women’s rights’ organisation, Women India Movement. The details of the treatment meted out to women are disturbing. According to the petition, the women were forced to sleep on the floor of dormitories and the bathroom doors were deliberately without locks. It also mentioned that many of the women detained had been confined for years, with no treatment provided to them in case of illnesses and sickness. Another report stated that the women would be forcefully woken up at 4. 15 am evey day and would be preached about Hinduism. The instructors would periodically demonise the Bible and the Quran. It also stated that, according to the complainant, the inmates were not allowed to speak to each other and would be monitored by CCTV surveillance cameras.
These horrendous chain of events are preceded by reports about Athira, a woman who converted back to Hinduism after undergoing a course at a reconversation centre called Aarsha Vidya Samajam in Kerala. A report suggested that Aarsha Vidya Samajam, too, preached anti-Islamic sentiments. Athira converted back to Hinduism after being influenced by the teachings at Aarsha Vidya Samaja. The escaped complainant claimed that she met Athira had the Siva Sakti Yoga Centre too.
This quagmire of confusion and torture surrounding the two cases, brings to light the disgusting anti-secular scams that organisations like Siva Sakti Yoga Centre that advertise ‘peace’ and ‘tranquility’, are a part of. First, we have a spate of sadhus like Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh and Asaram Bapu raping women in the name of religion and now, we have yoga retreats holding women captive and harassing them to convert to Hinduism and to abandon their non-Hindu families. Obsessing over religious conversion is one thing, but holding 6o women captive to mass voodoo their chosen religion and life choices out of them is how we know that religious fringe groups have a new low.