Radhanath's Role in Reinstating New Vrindavan back into ISKCON
BY: GADADHAR DAS
Mar 03, 2012 DALLAS, TEXAS, USA (SUN) The recent Sun article, "Patrick and Melanie: Early ISKCON History" states following timeline, some of which was given by Hrishikesh das:
In 1987, B. Radha-Govinda rescued Malati from the streets of New York City
In 1987, Kirtanananda was excommunicated from ISKCON for his deviations
In 1988, the entire New Vrindaban community was expelled from ISKCON
In 1996, Kirtanananda was sentenced to 20 years in Federal Prison
In 1998, New Vrindaban was provisionally allowed to return to the ISKCON fold
In 1998, Malati dd was made a GBC
Here I want to provide details of the role played by Radhanath in 1994 in reinstating New Vrindavan back into ISKCON - that is two years before Kirtanananda was sentenced and 4 years before New Vrindavan returned to ISKCON, if the above timeline is correct.
In January 1994, I stayed for one month in Vrindavan Temple in India. I was taking classes given by VIHE – the Vaisnava Institute for Higher Education. At that time so many teachers and Gurus were there also, such as Tamal Krishna, Bhurijan, Bhakti Chaitanya Swami, Ravindra Svarupa, etc. During this time Radhanath and Nityoditya Swami came to Vrindavan. One day Radhanath Swami gave Bhagavatam Class and the next day, Nityoditya. Radhanath gave a very long class and made a strong appeal for cooperation.
Were they invited by ISKCON or did they come on their own? I do not know what went on behind the scenes, before or after their appearance.
But there was a North American GBC and Temple Presidents meeting in Dallas in June 1994, which I attended. A proposal was made to welcome back New Vrindavan into ISKCON. I raised the objection that it may create a bad reputation for ISKCON because we do not know what crimes New Vrindavan may have committed. My point was to wait until we get a clear picture. Only Tamal understood my point and when others said they did not understand what point I am making, Tamal stepped in and explained my point.
My hunch is that ISKCON wanted to regain control over New Vrindavan as soon as possible and must have put tremendous pressure on New Vrindavan leaders to come to the table and cooperate with the GBC, or the GBC will spill more beans and throw many more New Vrindavan leaders (besides Kirtanananda) in front of Government judges and prosecutors - the lions and tigers.
My hunch is that the GBC proposed the deal to Radhanath - let Kirtanananda go to jail and you and your lieutenants go free and inherit the New Vrindavan Kingdom. The rest is history. Government gets some meat (Kirtanananda goes to jail), Radhanath becomes Guru and GBC, Tapah Punjya and Kuladri come back to New Vrindavan.
Please note that all this happened two years before Kirtanananda was sentenced.
I left ISKCON in July 1994 - one month after the above described GBC meeting. I do not know what happened afterwards.
Since Malati devi dasi was not in New Vrindavan before or after Sulocan's murder on May 22, 1986, it is clear that what Malati states is what she is asked to say by someone - not that she knows for a fact - as pointed out by B. Radha-Govinda in her article, "How Would She Know?"
Malati's declarations taken from her article, "A Factual Timeline of Events " and given below sounds like false propaganda in light of the article, "Radhanath Swami's Alleged Involvement in Sulochan's Murder" by Hrishikesh dasa (Henry Doktorski).
"Radhanath Swami, who was not privy to any of the above, was passing through New Vrindaban on his way to preaching programs in northern Ohio.
During this period in time, Radhanath Swami was a traveling preacher who spent little time in NV and was not involved with the management and knew very little of any going's on, internal or otherwise.
Michael Stein (the prosecuting attorney in the cases) was recently asked point blank whether or not Radhanath Swami was ever a suspect in any crimes related to New Vrindaban and he replied, "Actually, anyone who had some kind of recognition (in New Vrindaban) was a suspect. However, after a thorough investigation which included Radhanath Swami being interrogated by the LAPD, the Moundsville-Wheeling PD and the FBI, it became obvious that Mr. Slavin (Radhanath Swami) did not have anything to do with nor was he accomplice to any crimes."
So how did a traveling preacher became leader/manager of New Vrindavan even two years before Kirtanananda was sentenced, and was negotiating with the GBC to get back New Vrindaban back into ISKCON? Who inherited the Kingdom?
I hope this is of some help to fill-in some gaps about Radhanath's role even two years before Kirtanananda was sentenced.