Self-styled godman Dhirendra Krishna Shastri, known as Bageshwar Dham Sarkar, has portrayed himself as a spiritual leader with alleged powers to guess the problems his subjects face in life without being told about them.
Shastri is in the news after a Maharashtra-based organisation fighting superstition, Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti, challenged him to demonstrate his miraculous power in its Satsang. However, Shastri reportedly did not accept this challenge.
At a recent Live Durbar, which was streamed live on the YouTube channel of Bageshwar Dham Sarkar, an ABP News reporter Gyanendra Tiwari interacts with Shastri. In the incident, which took place on January 20, 2023, Shastri, as he was speaking on stage, asked, "Can anyone from the media tell me what my chacha's (paternal uncle) name is? If you cannot, after this, stop calling me superstitious?"
He then says, "Whoever has an uncle named Bhrigunath Tiwari should come to the stage". The ABP news reporter Gyanendra Tiwari walks up to the stage and says his uncle’s name is Bhrigunath Tiwari. Shastri warns the media against spreading rumours of superstition against him, to which Tiwari replies that he has been attempting to uncover the truth behind Shastri’s situation.
Shastri then asks if his brother 'Raghunath Tiwari' held a housewarming ceremony recently; Tiwari assents to this. He then asks if his niece is named Abhishi, to which Tiwari responds with a yes.
The leading media outlet ABP News aired a news segment on January 20, 2023, which contained the same footage as the segment uploaded on the YouTube channel of Bageshwar Dham Sarkar. The tweet is captioned, “Bageshwar Dham Sarkar Vs Gyanendra Tiwari: Answer to Each mystery on ABP News.”
On the same day, the news channel aired an interaction with Tiwari over his experiences with Shastri. Journalist Tiwari is asked by the anchor if there are miracles. Tiwari replies that he had interviewed Shastri before, but he had not told the godman about himself.
He says, "I do not think it is a big miracle to find out about somebody, but when you are sitting in a crowd, and hearing your uncle's name being called, and being informed about your brother's housewarming. What happened today was troubling, surprising.”
Tiwari also talks about the piece of paper provided to him by Shastri. "He asked me to ask him any question. Then he handed me a piece of paper. In which he had already answered the question before I had even asked it."
In a Facebook Live, which was streamed on January 20, 2023, titled “What happened when Dhirendra Shastri of Bageshwar Dham called the ABP reporter on stage? Gyanendra Tiwari will tell.” Tiwari, at the 11.07 mark, talks about the information allegedly revealed by Shastri about the reporter being publicly available on his social media accounts.
He replies to the doubts by saying, "All these things take place later. I was looking into his eyes... He was sad and did not seem like an ordinary person while talking..."
As we scanned the comments of the posts by ABP News, we came across users pointing out the information about Tiwari’s family.
We then checked Tiwari’s Facebook page, and in his 'About' section on Facebook, it notes that his brother - Raghavendra Tiwari, is listed as his brother in the Family and Relationships section.
We scanned through Tiwari's brother's profile, Raghvendra Tiwari, which shows him posing with his daughter in the cover photo.
A user named Bhrighunath Prasad Tiwari replies to the post where he calls the girl cute, adding her name, Abhishi. Underneath is a reply to Bhrighunath’s comment by Raghavendra, saying, "Thank you, Chachaji(Uncle).”
To recollect, Shastri used the same uncle’s name to call upon a reporter to the stage, asking, "If anyone has an uncle named Bhrighunath."
On January 18, 2023, a Facebook live video was shared by Gyanendra Tiwari with a caption in Hindi that translates to, "It is the day of the housewarming at my elder brother's house. We are remembering God."
To recollect, Shastri asked the reporter whether his brother built new home recently on which he said yes, he held a housewarming ceremony two days ago.
We found that ABP News had circulated a news report where the so-called miraculous powers of self-styled godman, Dhirendra Krishna Shastri, were shared as apparently true based on the testimony of an ABP News reporter Gyanendra Tiwari. While Tiwari acknowledged that finding out background information is not a miracle, he dismissed the claims that information on his social media page was able to influence the interaction between him and Tiwari.
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