Reform or Cover Up After Kausthub Desikachar Sex Abuse Allegations in 2012?

2012, October

Allegations of sexual abuse by Kausthub Desikachar become public. The group of students he is teaching is reportedly in solidarity with the accusers, who are students in that same group.

Kausthub Desikachar flees from Austria, where the alleged abuse took place, and stays in India. He “steps down” from KHYF. We put that in quotes because the person who takes over running the KHYF is said to be Kausthub’s secretary.

A new organization called SKY (purportedly by TKV Desikachar and Menaka Desikachar) takes over the responsibilities of KHYF.

TKV Desikachar passed away in August 2016, sadly. He was reliably reported to be suffering from early dementia as far back as 2009. Three years later, in 2012, how could TKV Desikachar have undertaken the responsibility of forming and overseeing an entire new organization?

Nonetheless, the name and goodwill of TKV Desikachar confers legitimacy to the new organization, and few questions are raised.

2013, April

In just 7 months, Kausthub Desikachar rebrands and relaunches himself under the organization Yoga Makaranda.

SKY and Yoga Makaranda are supposed to be separate organizations—after all, Kausthub Desikachar was removed from all positions in the KHYF which rebranded as SKY—but the organizations share the same mailing list, postal code, and mailshot system (Gurus of Yoga, Mark Singleton, 2013).

Kausthub claims to have had a professional and spiritual journey of healing in 7 months, after accusations of perpetrating years of abuse!

His acknowledgement of his conduct is a brief paragraph expressing regret that people are hurt and some of his decisions in the past did not live up to his highest standards he usually sets for himself.

2013-2014

Kausthub continues to teach and expands his offerings, including programs on yoga for women, yoga for trauma etc.

2014-2015

Once the case against Kausthub Desikachar with Interpol in Europe is dropped, SKY and Yoga Makaranda are effectively merged with Kausthub returning to running the KHYF again.

Especially in cases of sexual abuse, it is important to remember what many stories of the #MeToo movement show us: the time, effort, money, support, and trauma required for victims to face and prosecute their abuser in a court of law means that charges could be dropped for many reasons. Consider how much more difficult this is if the perpetrator is a citizen of a foreign country who has returned to his homeland.

2015-2017

Kausthub is back to teaching on topics such as granthis, kapalikas and tantric sex practices etc. that formed a key part of his sexual abuse allegations.

Does this timeline of events indicate to you that any meaningful reform or restitution happened at KHYF?

Does this inspire trust in you to send women to study with KHYF under Kausthub Desikachar?

2 thoughts on “Reform or Cover Up After Kausthub Desikachar Sex Abuse Allegations in 2012?”

  1. If any class I am doing now was affiliated I would drop it today. Staying far far away. Disgusting. Power grabs with simultaneous disrespect to his liniage in business I’m sure are 100% related to his personal issues.

  2. December 2018 Kaushtub Desikachar is an eminent speaker and would conduct a workshop at the “yoga as therapy” conference. When I asked the management of the conference “how come”? This was their answer:

    Dear sir,

    Legal authorities have cleared Dr. Kaustubh Desikacha of the allegations levelled against him. Therefore, due diligence has been done and he has been invited for conducting a practical workshop at our conference.

    Thanking you,

    Who were the authorities? the Indian…? the Austrian?

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