Friday, January 6, 2017

Founder of Bikram Yoga Found Guilty of Sexual Harassment

A group of women in yoga poses.
Photo credit: Shutterstock
Bikram Choudhury, the man who founded the world’s first hot yoga studio, was ordered to forfeit the revenue from his businesses in order to settle his $6.8 million sexual harassment case. He was also ordered to give up his collection of fine cars, which equates to a total of 43 vehicles ranging from Ferraris to Bentleys to Rolls-Royces.

The ruling comes after Minakshi 'Miki' Jafa-Bodden (Choudhury's former legal adviser) sued him for sexual harassment and wrongful termination. Last year, Jafa-Bodden was fired for refusing to cover up allegations of sexual harassment.

Jafa-Bodden claims that she herself was a victim of his unwanted advances. She alleges that Choudhury touched her inappropriately and tried to get her to stay with him in his hotel.

The Daily Mail reports that she was awarded nearly $1 million in compensatory damages and more than $6 million in punitive damages.

“This is a good day for women,” Jafa-Bodden said after the ruling came down.

However, the 43 luxury cars that Choudhury was ordered to give up have mysteriously gone missing… along with any trace of Choudhury himself.

Choudhury’s garage manager denies any involvement with the sudden disappearance of the cars. However, Jafa-Bodden’s lawyers claim that they have photographic evidence of his entanglement.

“Bikram is no longer the boss of Bikram yoga. I am. I’ve been to hell and back but the jury has spoken. Bikram has tried to conceal assets and has fled America but justice will be done.”

Now that the verdict is out, pictures of Choudhury standing on women in nothing but a Speedo have suddenly taken on a new meaning. It’s disturbing to say the least, and I can’t even imagine what his wife is feeling.

I myself as a yoga practitioner have gone to Bikram studios in the past. It makes me sick to think that I ever supported a sexual predator.