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Rajneesh given three-month permit for Ireland

March 15, 1986

LIMERICK, Ireland (AP) _ Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, the Indian guru deported ofrom the United States, expelled from Greece and barred from Britain, has been given an entry permit for Ireland, the Justice Department said Friday.

Rajneesh and eight disciples took over a floor of Jury’s Hotel in Limerick on March 7, according to hotel staff members.

They were asked Friday if the guru was still at the hotel, but they would say only that some members of his entourage were there.

Police at Ireland’s Shannon airport and state-run television said Rajneesh was still in Ireland, and the police added they would have been informed if he had left the country.

The Justice Department said Rajneesh was issued an entry permit, valid for three months, after he arrived at the Shannon airport by private jet.

Sources at the airport immigration office said the guru had indicated he wanted to fly to Antigua when weather conditions were suitable, but the government on that Caribbean island declared he would be denied entry.

Rajneesh claims to have 500,000 followers worldwide and describes himself as the ″rich man’s guru.″ He blends Eastern mysticism and Western pop psychology in teaching meditation as a route to enlightenment.

He lived in the United States for four years, most of the time on a commune in Oregon, until his deportation in November for violating immigration laws.

Since then, he has traveled to India, Nepal and Greece, where he stayed two weeks before he was expelled after being denounced by Greek Orthodox clergymen as a public menace.