The Trustees and the Council of Management of the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust issued the following press release on 28 April 2011.
The original can be found here: media.radiosai.org/www/Special_Ann43.html
1. The Trustees and the Council of Management of Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust thank the representatives of the print and electronic media who are attending this press conference. Though the media wanted reactions from the Trust in the recent few weeks, the situation, particularly the declining health of Bhagawan Baba, did not make it possible for the Trustees to address any issue other than the treatment being given to Bhagawan Baba. Therefore, the delay in calling this press meet.
2. Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust was founded by Bhagawan Baba in 1972. It is a public Charitable Trust and has been engaged in service activities mainly in the field of Education and Health. Two associate trusts also founded by Bhagawan Baba deal with Medical Relief and Higher Education: they are the Sri Sathya Sai Medical Trust and the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning. The Sri Sathya Sai Medical Trust which has been carrying out the medical relief activities has been taken over by Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust from Dec 1, 2010.
3. Bhagawan Baba has been the moving spirit for all these service activities. The Medical relief activity is carried out through two Super Specialty hospitals, one at Puttaparthi and the other at Whitefield, Bengaluru, and two general hospitals one each at Puttaparthi and Whitefield, Bengaluru. Medical relief has been provided to a large number of poor and needy patients without any distinction of caste, religion and language. The details of the Medical relief provided and the infrastructure which has been set up for this are available in websites of Sri Sathya Sai Medical Trust (www.sssmt.org.in) and Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust (www.srisathyasai.org.in).
4. In the field of education, the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust runs two schools, one at Puttaparthi and another at Rajahmundry. Higher education is imparted by Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning at its campuses at Whitefield, Bengaluru, Anantapur and Puttaparthi. A new campus which is ready at Muddenahalli near Chickaballapur in Karnataka state is on the anvil of commencing its operations. The primary focus in all these institutions is value based education and character building.
5. All these activities are carried on in a spirit of service with the belief that love and compassion form the bedrock of spiritual evolution. Medical relief and Education is completely free. The resources are provided by the Trusts. The Trusts have a moderate corpus which fetches a reasonable return, which is augmented by voluntary contributions made to the Trusts by donors from India and abroad.
6. The activities of the Trusts are spread over the states of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. The Trusts own and possess land and buildings which are required for education and medical relief activities. The Super Specialty Hospital at Puttaparthi is situated in a campus of about 105 acres of land.
Similarly the Super Specialty hospital at Whitefield, Bengaluru is situated in a campus of 52 acres of land. The Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust has met the cost of construction of the projects for setting up the hospitals which was about Rs 65 crores for the Puttaparthi Hospital in 1991 and Rs 130 crores for the Whitefield Hospital in 2001.
7. The General Hospital at Puttaparthi is located on 7 acres of land. The Trust is also running a General Hospital at Whitefield.
8. Similarly in the case of Educational activities, the Anantapur campus for Women is located on a site measuring about 115 acres. The campus at Whitefield, Bengaluru comprises about 38 acres. The campus, known as Vidyagiri, situated at Prasanthi Nilayam comprising school, University, stadium, administrative buildings, planetarium, etc. is located in about 60 acres of land.
9. As regards the schools, Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust runs a school at Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh situated in a campus of about 25 acres.
10. The Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust has also constructed an airport for the benefit of the devotees and patients in the year 1991. The airport is spread over150 acres of land.
11. The Prasanthi Nilayam campus is spread over 70 acres of land. The Trust also owns land and buildings in Kodaikanal, Tamilnadu. The extent of land is around 3 acres. The Trust also runs a community center known as Sri Sathya Sai Nigamagamam at Hyderabad which is spread over about 3.5 Acres. Another community hall known as Sri Sathya Sai Samskrutha Sadanam situated in Bangalore belongs to the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust.
12. In the recent news reports the value of the Trusts have been hugely exaggerated and it may be seen from the above that the lands are being used as an integral part of the educational campuses and hospitals. They are not meant for commercial use especially in the context of alienated lands which were given for specific purposes.
13. In addition to the above medical relief and education activities, the Central Trust has undertaken drinking water supply projects in Anantapur, Medak, Mahboobnagar, East and West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh. The Trust maintained these projects for a year before handing them over to the Government. They have since been running smoothly. Besides these, a project for modernisation of the Kandaleru – Poondy canal for providing drinking water to Chennai city has been undertaken. Such water supply projects undertaken between 1995 and 2010 involved an outlay of Rs. 500 crores.
14. The Trusts of Bhagawan Baba have never made an appeal for donations. The income of the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust and the Sri Sathya Sai Medical Trust has ranged from Rs 100 – 130 crores per year during the last 4 years. The expenditure for the same period has ranged between Rs 75 – 100 crores per year. It is therefore evident that the size of the Trust is modest.
15. For the medical relief activity, about 1000 persons are employed which includes doctors, nurses, paramedical and other staff. The educational activities involve a total number of around 250 employees. In addition, the Sri Sathya Sai Organisation, which is a voluntary organisation of the devotees of Bhagawan Baba, provides volunteers to support these service activities.
16. Besides these, Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust has set up Sri Sathya Sai International Center at Lodhi Road, New Delhi. At the said Center, a school, a training center for Educare and International Center for dissemination of human values, a library and an auditorium have been provided.
17. Inspired by Bhagawan Baba, many schools are set up and charitable activities are organised by devotees in many cities in India and abroad. These do not come under the fold of Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust and they are owned and administered by separate bodies governed by their respective charters.
18. In light of the baseless, irresponsible and false accusations of defalcation of gold, valuable artefacts and even money, it is emphatically stated that these accusations are wholly untrue and it is believed that these have been engineered by certain vested interests with a view to defame the fair name of the Trust, its functionaries and the Trustees. There is no truth whatsoever in these allegations.
19. All transactions of the Trusts are duly accounted in their books of account. An experienced and qualified chartered accountant oversees the accounting and financial management. The accounts are duly audited by a reputed firm of Chartered Accountants based at Delhi. Periodical returns, accounts and audit reports as prescribed by law are duly filed with the concerned authorities under the Income Tax Act, FCRA and other applicable statutes. There is no proceeding initiated against any of the Trusts by any authority under any statute alleging any impropriety or violation of law.
20. The Trustees, functionaries and the members of the Council of Management have all been personally selected and placed in their respective positions by the revered Founder Trustee Bhagawan Baba. They are persons of impeccable credentials having served in various capacities in their respective careers. All of them serve the Trust in honorary capacity out of their devotion to the Founder Trustee, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, being motivated by His universal message to serve humanity – "Manava Seva is Madhava Seva. "