According to reports, Sujoy was detained in the UNESCO heritage town of Bodh Gaya, which attracts tens of thousands of pilgrims every year, after boys complained that they had been beaten, abused and forced to dance naked, police said.
Police officer Ram Kumar Chaudhary said the 55-year-old monk, a Bangladeshi national, was arrested Aug. 29 in Bodh Gaya, a prominent Buddhist pilgrimage site in Bihar state.
He said police registered a criminal case against the monk, Bhante Sangh Priya, and were questioning 15 boys aged 10 to 12, some of whom complained to their parents about the monk’s behavior.
The scandal is the latest to hit the Buddhist establishment after the former head of China’s government-run Buddhist association was removed this week as abbot of a Beijing temple following a sexual assault investigation.
A senior police officer at Bodh Gaya told AFP there are “serious allegations” against Bhante Shanghpriya Sujoy who took boys aged between six and 12 from impoverished families in India’s remote northeast.
Bodh Gaya is known for the Mahabodhi Temple Complex marking the site where the Buddha is believed to have attained enlightenment beneath a sacred Bodhi Tree. It is 110 kilometers (70 miles) south of Patna, the state capital.