India, the most religious and religiously-sensitive nation, was shocked on Mar 2 evening to see an explicit video of a spiritual guru getting cozy with a Tamil actress.
This led to the guruji's followers venting out their anger of being deceived with violence. Followers went on a rampage and ransacked the ashrams in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka's Bidadi.
This was inevitable. The Swamiji had first played all the tricks in the book to earn the trust of the people and popularity, and then let them down.
He was not only worshiped among the commoners but claimed the credit of having many high profile followers including celebrities, artists, seers and politicians.
From Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa and Gujarat CM Narendra Modi to movie stars like late Vishnuvardhan, actress Tara and Mallavika Avinash - the high profile followers list of Swamiji is a long one.
Nithyanda won over thousands of followers with his sweet promises of healing sickness and finding bliss.
Like any other successful guruji of India, Swamji also enjoyed a good following from foreigners as well.
All this did not just add to strength of the following he holds but the clever Swamiji also used this to add to his popularity and fame quotient.
Inviting popular personalities to programmes and events at the ashram or those organised by him, the Swamji made sure that he shot up in popularity himself.
The traveling foreigners took care of global recognition of the Swamiji.
Thus eight years ago, Nithyananda landed in Bidadi, took the land from the farmers promising that it would be used to build a spiritual centre. Today the ashram has been reduced to a pile of rubble and shards of glass.
Ultimately, the man played with the faith that people put in him and ravaged their confidence all with one sex tape. This has not only destroyed the image of Swami Nithyananda but is also bound to have a cascading effect on all the religious leaders.