Posted on March 15, 2023

City of Newark Falls for Sister City Scam

Ali Bauman, CBS, March 8, 2023

The city of Newark is admitting it got scammed.

It was about to become a Sister City with a Hindu nation, but there was one problem — the nation doesn’t exist.

As CBS2’s Ali Bauman reports, the city only found out about the fraud after it held an official ceremony for it.


Earlier this year, Mayor Ras Baraka invited what he thought was the Hindu nation of Kailasa to Newark’s City Hall for a cultural trade agreement, but it turns out Kailasa is no nation at all; it’s a fake.


Though it has a detailed website, “Kailasa” has no real government. It’s the brainchild of Swami Nithyananda, a notorious scam artist and fugitive from India who has been on the run from rape charges since 2019.

“Whose job was it to do a simple Google search? No one in City Hall, not one person did a Google search, so maybe we need a transformation of City Hall {snip},” Newark resident Shakee Merritt said.