DID THE DENVER DISTRICT COURT JUDGE, AND THE COLORADO APPELLATE PANEL MAKE A MISTAKE IN THEIR RULINGS?
Prańipátena Pariprashnena Sevayá
Recently a comment was heard, concluding that the Denver District Court Judge Martinez and the Colorado Appellate Panel made mistakes in their final decisions in favour of the Defendants (the current Board of Ananda Marga, Inc., and Ananda Marga Pracaraka Samgha (Central)). This resounding comment came from a Senior Margii who believes he has a correct understanding of the 2010 Case in Denver. For the purpose of clarification and to counter such backward and unhelpful opinions, this notice is published — to respond to the pointed question,
Did the Denver District Court Judge (in 2011) and the Colorado Appellate Panel (in 2014) make mistakes in ruling for the Defendants.
This note asserts that the rulings were NOT a mistake, that they were consistent with the reality of AMPS, AMI and the history of both entities in the US, the continent and around the globe. In fact, you will see (in part of the evidence) that Plaintiffs either disregarded, or ignored the facts and the information produced as evidence, in many cases introduced by themselves and their own attorneys.
In 2010, the then current board of Ananda Marga, Inc. (Plaintiffs) filed a civil suit in the Denver District Court against the newly reconstituted Board of Directors of AMI. The new board of directors (Defendants), recruited by the Sectorial Secretary Ac. Vimalananda Avt. at the request of AMPS Central, had given written notice to the previous board to turn over the assets and the control of AMI and all of its affiliates in the US.
The civil suit that was filed, in simple terms, complaining that as a Corporation, AMI had the right to autonomy and self-determination — and it relied on basic Corporate regulations of Colorado to make that claim. And, it was asserted that the newly reconstituted board and AMPS had no right to interfere with its affairs. It was a defense purely on Corporate grounds.
In it defense, the new board countered saying that AMI was the legal embodiment of the global spiritual hierarchical entity on the continent for AMPS, and therefore the new board was in its right to make changes and attain full control. The defense relied on Constitutional law, the Federal 1st Amendment rights of a “religion” to determine its purpose and expression according to its established conventions, scriptures and procedures, without interference of the courts or any other entity.
Both parties provided documents and other evidence in the discovery period. There were thousands of pages of documents, statements and other items, including a history of newsletters, flyers, and the like. Rather than go into all of the evidence and their strengths, we look at one primary set of documents.
For the purpose of addressing the “mistake” comment referred to here, we wish to bring to the forefront one of the sets of documents that both parties supplied in Discovery. We refer to the IRS Form 1023 Petition that AMI filed in 2003 (and again in 2004) to have formal recognition by the Federal taxing agency, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), that AMI was a “church”, or at least a “religious organization” for tax purposes. In the petition, AMI asserted that it had been since 1970 but that it had never been formally recognized.
The Plaintiffs supplied their IRS 1023 documents from the corporate records, and the Defendants submitted documents it had received upon a formal request from the public records in the custody of the IRS, as evidence in the case. We supply two attachments below. These are official exhibits (copies of what is in the public record with the IRS) submitted to the Denver District Court for the matter, combining pages supplied by both Plaintiffs and Defendants. The exhibit page numbers from the Plaintiffs are preceded by a “P”, as in P000831. From the Defendants, the page numbers are preceded by “DFTS”, as in DFTS00413.
So, the facts are in these documents, and a sliver in the attached files making up a total of 27-pages. You are welcome to read them in full.
The pages of the submitted IRS Form 1023 (from the years 2003 and 2004) show a number of facts —
1. That the name Ananda Marga is synonymous with the name PATH OF BLISS – P000831 and P000839
2. That AMPS is a global spiritual hierarchical organization with its Parent AMPS based in Ananda Nagar, India. That AMI represents the portion of that entity in the countries of North America, Central America and the Caribbean [and Hawaii], since 1969. – P000839
3. The hierarchy is described in greater detail, “…Sectors, with corresponding Regions, Dioceses (States or Provinces), Districts, Villages & local Chapters…” – P000843
4. That there is a spiritual head “Purodha Pramukha” who appoints a General Secretary who signs all Posting Orders of the Wholetime Acaryas to their postings. – P000843
5. Statement: “Proceeding from the Purodha Pramukha, there are organizational structural authorities all the way through and including the Central, Sectorial, Dioceses, District and Village levels throughout the world.” – P000843
6. Statement: “All Ministerial positions are defined, recognized and further are regulated solely by the global governing body of Ananda Marga, AMPS Central.” – P000843
7. Statement: “Ananda Marga, Inc. does not ordain Ministers. That function is reserved for AMPS Central.”
8. These documents were signed under penalty of perjury by one of the Plaintiffs in the Denver District Court litigation, the then Sectorial Office Secretary acting as the corporate Secretary of AMI.
This set of documents was only one of many that supported the position of the Defense. Unfortunately, the Plaintiffs and their witnesses were either not familiar with the evidence, or they elected to ignore the facts present in the documents and the reality of AMPS since its inception in 1955, 1969 in the US.
Many who have followed the case, read the documents and the court proceedings, who have come to better understand the Denver District Court case with AMI at stake, now conclude that the case was frivolous in its filing, all the way to its conclusion. They conclude that the case as a waste of a couple of millions of dollars, and an attempt to confuse the Ananda Marga and Margii communities in the US and worldwide. We invite all not to be further confused. Ask the proper questions and clear your mind. Humanity is waiting for Ananda Marga to emerge from the clouds of grey and uncertainty.
The good news, the IRS approved the status of “religious organization” for Ananda Marga, Inc. based on the referred-to petition on IRS Form 1023, links below.
We confidently assert that there was no mistake in the final ruling of the August Judicial Courts in Denver District and Colorado Appellate. Any one who declares otherwise, please direct them to this statement and the other supporting statements. Truth prevails, dogma will not. The judges in both Colorado courts reaffirmed the statements and the facts that had existed since 1955 in India, and since 1969 in the USA, and those contained in many official filings and statements of the AMI corporation prior to the filing of the case in 2010.
Ba’ba’ Na’m Kevalam
HERE ARE THE FILES REFERRED TO ABOVE —
IRS Determination letter for AMI as a “Religious” and Not-for-Profit Org’n, with some other pages from the filing – Click here for the PDF File
Pages from Form 1023 that AMI filed with the IRS in 2003 – Click here for the PDF File