Nellore: A woman member of an ashram fled with a huge amount collected from devotees as part of investment scheme. Following the escape of the woman, the self-styled baba attempted suicide by consuming pesticide.
According to sources, Ananthabhotla Sudhakar, working as teacher at ZillaParishad School in Sullurpet, started an ashram here at Prasanthi Nagar some years ago. He has been preaching religious sermons to the local people and gradually became popular.
He had recently started a 108-day Dattatreya IshtakamyaMaha Yagam at his ashram on December 13 with the support of devotees. He started a scheme printing Namavali Books (Hymns of God) and distributing them among devotees.
He used to collect Rs. 1,000 from the devotees assuring that they would get back Rs. 1,400 after filling the book in a stipulated time. It got enormous response from the people who paid lakhs of rupees for the books.
The scheme reached to a peak and the Ashram owed huge money to the people. The ashram organisers reportedly were not repaying the assured amount of Rs 1,400 per book. Instead, the devotees were asked to reinvest the money in the scheme.