Yoga instructor investigated for sexual misconduct: Trust Yoga

File photo of a woman in a yoga pose. Photo: Carl Barcelo
File photo of a woman in a yoga pose. Photo: Carl Barcelo

A yoga instructor is being investigated for sexual misconduct after a student accused him of sexually assaulting her.

According to the Trust Yoga studio, which has outlets in Tampines and Telok Ayer, the unnamed male instructor has been suspended amid an internal investigation after the woman said she had been touched inappropriately. It said the matter has been reported to the authorities.

“We were made aware of a former student’s allegations that she had been sexually assaulted by an instructor at Trust Yoga. … We have also extended our full cooperation in assisting the authorities with their investigations,” Trust Yoga said in a statement last night. 

Neither the studio or the accuser has responded to Coconuts Singapore’s messages seeking comment.

On Friday, the woman, who said she was a former student at the studio, alleged in a tweet that she had been sexually assaulted by an instructor named Raj during a class while he was making adjustments to her position. The woman said she has sought legal aid over the July 11 incident. Her Twitter account has since been set to private. 

“Two incidents [occurred] during class: 1) he smacked my left butt cheek when I was in a forward fold, and 2) he stroked from my left butt cheek, my crotch, to my right cheek when I was in an inversion called pincha mayurasana. It was a deliberate stroke that lasted about 3s?” she wrote. She also said that the instructor had a visible erection. 

On the following day, she said that she confronted the studio’s owners with her father about the matter. She said the school’s CCTV system did not capture the incident and was told by an employee it was not the first time the instructor had molested a student.

“They lied, saying this is the ‘first time’ this happened. So your staff told me all these stories for fun? When he is risking his own job by revealing internal affairs to me? They also told me they couldn’t see much from the CCTV footage as I was in a blind spot,” she wrote. She also claims to be a certified yoga teacher. 

Trust Yoga, which is owned by former yoga world champion Manoj Deshwal, said it will give yoga students the option to limit physical interaction and check surveillance footage more frequently. 

“Students who do not wish to be adjusted during classes may pick up one of the ‘No Adjustment’ cards at the entrance of the class to communicate his or her practice preference to the instructor,” it said. 

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CITY: SINGAPORECATEGORY: NEWSSUB-CATEGORIES: CRIME

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