Bikram yoga founder fined $1.3 million in sexual harassment suit: Media

PHOTO: The Business Times

The founder of the Bikram yoga practice was ordered to pay US$924,500 (S$1.32 million) on Monday to a former legal adviser who said she was fired for investigating sexual misconduct charges against her employer, media reported.

Minakshi Jafa-Bodden, the former personal attorney of celebrity yoga guru Bikram Choudhury, was awarded compensatory damages by a Los Angeles jury for claims of discrimination, retaliation and of suffering sexual harassment herself, The Los Angeles Times reported.

During the trial, Choudhury had dismissed the accusations and said Jafa-Bodden was let go because she did not have a license to practice law in the United States, the Times and other media reported.

Choudhury published a book in 1979 with descriptions, photographs and drawings of his signature 26 postures and two breathing exercises yoga sequence, which is practiced in a room heated to 41 degrees Celsius.