Someone Has Poisoned Me

by Nityananda das, © 1999 New Jaypur Press

Dear Godbrothers, Godsisters and others:
Please accept my obeisances. All Glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Early in 1977 Srila Prabhupada became increasingly ill. Despite treatment from various Ayurvedic doctors, his condition did not improve.

Although almost unthinkable, very serious evidence has recently been obtained regarding a conspiracy to assassinate Srila Prabhupada by poisoning. Even if one or more of His disciples attempted to kill Srila Prabhupada, we must know that He departed when and how He chose to do so. No one could harm Him in any way because He was fully protected by Lord Krishna.

But if poisoning took place by the malicious intent of any person who still has a place or hand in Srila Prabhupada's mission, it is our duty as His followers to find out them out and guarantee an accounting. How can we neglect this?

There are those that attribute this issue to the imaginations of ISKCON enemies, rtviks or troublemakers, but we see that those who first brought the matter to public attention have been longstanding loyal ISKCON devotees. Because most people have heard of the poison issue via the rumor mill, the author of this documentary (myself) has therefore sought to present the facts as they are without innuendo or unfair characterizations. Indeed, there is the hope that under intense scrutiny, this will all be revealed as a dreadful misunderstanding, our worst fears misplaced. Not likely, however.

Internally, Srila Prabhupada chose His own time of departure. Externally, He was poisoned by arsenic, unable to eat and His body withered away due to malnutrition and toxic cellular obliteration. It is our duty as Srila Prabhupada's diksha and siksha followers to defend Him, better late than never. First we must establish the truth, then take appropriate action.

I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news. For over 18 months I have worked on the accumulation of evidence that Srila Prabhupada was chronically poisoned by arsenic in 1977. That evidence is this book, a letter to the followers of Srila Prabhupada. Please take the time to review the evidence carefully and consider assisting in the further investigation that is required to resolve this issue completely. In my opinion, the evidence is solid that Srila Prabhupada was poisoned, but by whom is not yet known. The level of proof, coincidences, and circumstantial evidence, makes for a very compelling verdict. I want to inform you of this evidence because I believe it is my duty to Srila Prabhupada and His Mission to push this matter to a healthy closure. In this, I am humbly asking your advice and assistance.

On November 17, 1997 I was working in the yard on a fine, cool afternoon. I had had my fill of controversy long ago. The cordless phone rang; Mahabuddhi Prabhu was calling from Florida, and what he told me sent chills down my back, brought sweat to my brow and left my knees feeling wobbly. He described shocking whispers he had discovered on tapes which indicated Srila Prabhupada, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, our beloved spiritual master, and that to thousands of others, had been poisoned twenty years earlier in 1977. Thus I became involved, practically against my will, with the question of whether the greatest spiritual teacher of modern times had been poisoned.

Many times I have turned my back on this issue, once for a period of over six months, hoping someone else would take up the reins of the investigation I had reluctantly become involved with. Then one evening, Lakshmi Nrsingha Prabhu asked me what I could contribute to the local temple program in the observance of Srila Prabhupada's disappearance day. Instantly, my conscience screamed at me: "You must publish the evidence on the poisoning of Srila Prabhupada as your duty to Krishna and the truth!" I could not bear to allow this information to remain dormant or hidden any longer. So, with many mixed and conflicting emotions, here it is. I pray that I have done the right thing.

This letter, or book, organizes the evidence and information to date (April 1999) regarding the poisoning of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, most probably carried out by some of His "closest" disciples. This subject is certainly a difficult one to address, and it is also difficult to present properly in a publication. As Srila Prabhupada advised, we may say something, but we must be very cautious about printing it. Only because the evidence is so substantial do I venture to do so, and I hope that further evidence will show all of this to be no more than a false alarm, which unfortunately, does not seem even remotely likely. The compelling material contained herein intrinsically demands a full scale inquiry by truthful persons with the full cooperation of ISKCON, the GBC, and, hopefully, suspects such as Tamal Krishna Goswami, Jayapataka Swami, Bhakticharu Swami, and others.

Originally, this production was intended as an audio documentary. Rochan Prabhu had arranged most of the ingredients for producing a CD, except for funding, which I then contributed. Dhaneshwar Prabhu worked hard under difficult circumstances at a location in Lockport, NY, for a month until the CD was pressed. Somehow there were some unpalatable dealings and we were extorted sizable sums of money. Dhaneshwar was forced to leave and I could not obtain the CD or the production materials, including the interviews. Finally, after two months, a copy of the CD was received, but not before the GBC and Harikesh had gotten it first through some unknown shady deal. It was feared that the host and narrator of the CD would then threaten to sue for royalties and up front money if I reproduced it. I was left with the choice to totally rework and re-record the CD or take the chance of legal entanglement with the troublesome narrator in Lockport.

Although Dhaneshwar Prabhu had done his best with the CD's content as could be expected with the facility and time limits, there were many things that left me dissatisfied with the CD. Critical parts of the story and evidence were either confusing, wordy or missing. A CD was limited to 73 minutes, a cassette tape 120 minutes, and I was reluctant to cut out so much of the relevant information. Thus I reconsidered the strategy of how to best present the poison issue evidence.

At the time it appeared that most devotees were focused entirely on the incriminating, twenty year old whispers, as though they were the heart of the evidence. But gradually I realized that the whispers were but one valuable confirmation of many other pieces of evidence. Also, the whisper's real value lay not simply in their interpretations by the human ear, but in how they were analyzed by advanced technology and spectrographic charts. Such charts could not be seen on a tape or CD, where many would fall into the trap of analyzing whispers by speculating and arguing about what they thought they were hearing. Would not a book avoid this pitfall, and re-focus everyone on the primary evidence, namely Srila Prabhupada's own statements that He was poisoned? The whispers are attention-grabbing, but what Srila Prabhupada said is the primary evidence, and the rest is supporting evidence. Since then, a positive hair analysis has very much strengthened the case.(Chapter 33)

A CD must be accompanied by a booklet and, in composing that booklet, it would tend to become a book anyway. A fully documented, printed work can be easily referred to again and again, without depending on a CD player and fast-forwarding to some elusive portion for review. A CD was sensational, spiffy and technologically advanced, but a book, however, is the approved and standard method of distributing the truth. Those who must HEAR the whispers will be able to order the tapes from the BBT Archives or other sources.

My appreciation for literary and investigative assistance goes to Rochan, Dhaneshwar, Agrahya, Mahabuddhi, Paritrikananda, Isha, and Gupta Prabhus, and many others. I have tried to make this presentation as accurate, honest and complete as possible, noting plainly what is a fact, what is a "lead", and what is my personal commentary or thoughts. It is hereby emphatically stated that I have presented the evidence as it is, without serving any motive or purpose other than the pursuit of the truth. I know that this book will be extremely controversial; it will be both loathed and appreciated, both condemned and received favorably. My physical life may be jeopardized and I am not altogether positive it is good for my spiritual life or consciousness either. (But I do remember Srila Prabhupada telling Harikesh about acting in difficult situations: 'Damn your consciousness.') But whatever, I cannot escape my conscience. With this letter I hope to promote a widespread and ecumenical search for the truth:

We already know that He was poisoned, but by whom?

The compelling material contained herein intrinsically demands a full scale inquiry by truthful persons with the full cooperation of ISKCON, the GBC, and, hopefully, suspects such as Tamal Krishna Goswami, Jayapataka Swami, Bhakticharu Swami, and others.

Assurance is hereby given that this book is not based on ignoble motives, and is not opposed to the principles of Krishna consciousness, ISKCON or the GBC. This is not an anti-ISKCON strategy or rtvik politics. Of course, many will disagree. I have tried to ensure that others, even those who may not be familiar with Krishna consciousness, will approach this issue with proper respect and appreciation for Srila Prabhupada's position and achievements. There is within this book an attempt to create the proper mood of inquiry and justice. Vengeance is not called for here. However, if Srila Prabhupada's mission has been usurped by some of the same people who attempted to kill him (only by Lord Krishna's arrangement did it happen), and those same people are among those who once proclaimed their divine right as the sole inheritors of the kingdom, it would truly be a disservice to His Divine Grace were we not to put our best effort into proving the truth of the matter. The proper mood of inquiry and seeking justice, I believe, is to seek the truth without malice or anger, but with unrelenting determination and in a cooperative spirit.

As the reader progresses through each chapter and appendix he or she will become more and more convinced of foul play, and will want a full and honest investigation in the search for the historical truth so that the health of Srila Prabhupada's Mission may be preserved. Read the following presentation of evidence, and, with an open and unbiased mind, think carefully about what should be done.

Srila Prabhupada left this mortal world on November 14, 1977 to rejoin Lord Sri Krishna in the eternal abode of Vaikuntha, from which perfect, liberated devotees descend for the transcendental benefit of the conditioned souls. One should never think that Srila Prabhupada, a pure devotee of the Supreme Lord Krishna, died. Rather, He lives forever in His instructions, and His followers will always live with Him. One should know that an eternally liberated associate of Krishna is not an ordinary man and that His appearance and disappearance in this world are arrangements of Krishna's internal energy. As stated by Bhaktivinode Thakur:

He reasons ill who tells that Vaishnavas die
While thou art living still in sound.
The Vaishnavas die to live, and living try
To spread the Holy Name around