A quick FYI….AOB interviewed over 300 people: women who made allegations, people who supported them, and people who supported the character of Yogi Bhajan. Toward the end of their process, they refused to speak with some people who requested interviews to support Yogi Bhajan. Each person’s testimony was given an identification number, such as #56.
Not an Investigation
The report states many times that AOB was commissioned to perform a third-party independent “investigation” even though their website says: “We are not investigators and do not try to uncover the past; instead, we try to improve things for the future.” And indeed, due to the fact that AOB did not have the credentials to carry out an investigation, this report was determined to be Illegal.
In May 2020, the Siri Singh Sahib Corp (SSSC) was notified that An Olive Branch was not licensed to do investigations – the work the Collaborative Response Team (CRT) had hired them to do. The SSSC did nothing to correct the situation and tried to brush it off by saying it didn’t matter if AOB was unlicensed, because the situation would never be prosecuted.
The SSSC seemed to miss the point of why people are licensed in the first place: states require that professionals with minimum qualifications be licensed in order to protect the public from unqualified and untrained providers – doctors, engineers, contractors, private investigators and so on. if the team of people conducting the “investigation” were not trained or qualified to properly conduct an investigation, what would the quality of that “investigation” likely be? It is this report.
Why did the SSSC appoint AOB, when AOB was unqualified and unlicensed? Did the CRT, the SSSC and their attorneys even ask whether AOB was licensed when they hired them? And why did the SSSC release the report after they knew AOB was not licensed? Why did the SSSC continue to direct and pay AOB for an investigation that they knew was illegal?
No Representation of the Accused
The problem with AOB’s illegal “investigation”, is that there was no representation of the accused, Yogi Bhajan. The SSSC attorneys dismissed this as well, saying that the deceased cannot be represented. This is false – the deceased are routinely represented in legal investigations by appointees called “personal representatives.” It happens every day; in cases such as car accidents, contract disputes, property disputes, etc.
Allegations and Accusers Identities Were Kept Secret
The AOB investigation was patently unfair because not only the identity of the accuser’s was kept secret, but their accusations as well as the time and place of the alleged claims were kept secret. And yet supporters of Yogi Bhajan who were interviewed were asked by AOB if they had evidence to dispute the claims of the “victims.” How is it possible to refute something you have no knowledge of?
In this age of #metoo, many women who claim sexual abuse have come forward publicly to tell their stories. Why were the women who reported abuse to AOB given special treatment and their identities and stories hidden from those who wanted to prove Yogi Bhajan’s innocence?