New Delhi: Spiritual leader Bhayyuji Maharaj allegedly shot himself at his residence in Indore on Tuesday. Police claim that prima facie evidence shows he committed suicide due to stress. They have recovered the gun and a suicide note.
The police say Bhaiyyuji went inside his Silver Spring Home room around noon. About 15 minutes later, his mother sent a domestic help to check whether he the self-styled guru had eaten his food.
Around 12:30 pm, Bhaiyyuji locked himself inside his daughter's room and a gunshot was heard. His personal assistant and mother ran to check and upon seeing what had happened, rushed him to Bombay Hospital. The doctors there declared him brought dead.
"He shot himself on the right side of his forehead," said the police.
"It’s yet to be confirmed on whose name the gun licence was issued. In the suicide note, the deceased has talked about stress and prima facie it seems a case of suicide but initially it was not clear what prompted the suicide,” Indore Deputy Inspector General of Police Hari Narayanchari Mishra told the media.
Mishra, however, added that the case would be probed from all possible angles.
Meanwhile, sources in the police claim the family members of the self-styled guru would be questioned. Police are also likely to dig up details of family discord, if any.
"Somebody should be there to handle the family... I am leaving... Too much stressed out, fed up,” the suicide note left behind by the 50-year-old read.
Several people, who interacted with Bhaiyyuji regularly, claimed that in recent chats he did not look stressed or depressed enough to end his life.
Others say the self-styled guru's family life was not smooth after he married his old disciple Dr Ayushi Sharma, a native of Morena last year. The 20-year age gap between the two had become a talking point and the guru's image suffered a jolt. He has a daughter from his first marriage.
Indore residents also claim that over the last few years, while his high profile followers continued to visit him, the overall numbers of followers had dwindled.
Bhayyuji Maharaj, whose original name is Uday Singh Deshmukh, is very popular in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh because of his spiritual and social work. He shot to fame for playing the role of a mediator during Anna Hazare's fast unto death.
His followers are spread across the film industry, politics and corporate world. The illustrious list of his followers includes former President Pratibha Patil, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, MNS supremo Raj Thackeray, singer Lata Mangeshkar, actor Milind Gunaji among others.
After completing his education in Mumbai, Bhaiyyuji took up a job while also modelling for noted apparel brands. However, he soon shunned the glamour world and established the Sadguru Datt religious and charitable trust.
In April, Maharaj was among five seers accorded the status of a minister by the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government in Madhya Pradesh for their work towards Narmada conservation. However, the self-styled spiritual leader later refused the status.
"A post holds no importance for a saint," news agency IANS had quoted Bhaiyyuji as saying. "All he has ought to think of is service to the people. When a post or status does not touch your mind, intellect or conscience, why think about it."
Bhaiyyuji's body was preserved at Bombay Hospital after an autopsy was conducted on his body at MY Hospital on Tuesday afternoon. Last rites of the spiritual guru would be carried out at 1 pm on Wednesday. Subsequently, his mortal remains would be kept at his Bapat road based ashram from 9 am to 12.30 pm.
Meanwhile, Congress leaders have latched on to his death to corner the BJP. “After he refused MoS status, the BJP still wanted him to work for it. This stressed him out. The matter should be probed by the CBI,” Congress spokesperson Manak Agrawal said.