Yoga mats. Ferns. Air diffusors. Small decorative waterfalls.
These are the items one expects a yoga instructor to keep in her bedroom. A Taurus .38 Special is less expected, but, it turns out, more necessary.
That’s what 61-year old yoga instructor Hari Nam Kaur Khalsa found out this week, and she used her small revolver to kill two of the four men who invaded her home and tried to harm her.
Originally from Texas (surprise, surprise), Khlasa has been living in Batuco, Chile, since 1979 where she teaches kundalini yoga. Four men broke into her home last Thursday, and two of them found her in her bedroom. There they hit her in the head with a gun and tried to tie her up, according to the Dallas Morning News.
But Khlasa was able to get to her bed where she kept a Taurus .38 Special revolver under her pillow. She turned the gun on the two men, killing one instantly and wounding the other. The wounded man made it to the front yard, where he died, and the remaining two robbers ran off.
Despite her occupation, Khlasa’s actions came as no surprise to José Nuñez, who runs the building where Khalsa lives. “This is not a grandma as you can imagine,” Nuñez, told the Dallas Morning News. “So don’t be imagining a little grandma who killed two crooks with her cane.”
Chilean authorities said Khlasa acted in self-defense and will not face charges.
Interestingly, Chileans seem to appreciate the foreigner’s use of a firearm to defend herself, her home, and her students.
El Mercurio broke the story in Chile, and while Google’s translation is admittedly sketchy, the meaning of one of the article’s top comments comes through clearly: “The gringa deserves citizenship by grace noble action for the benefit of society, thousands of Chileans appreciate it!!”
Another commenter called Khlasa “Mrs. Valient,” and one said she should run for mayor.
The most praiseworthy came from someone named Guillermo Barria, who got right to the point: “Idol.. Master… great woman take up arms…” he said in his comment.
The praise from Chileans is well-founded, as they are no doubt frustrated with their country’s rising crime rates, especially in Santiago, their nation’s capital. The U.S. Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) notes that Santiago saw a dramatic increase in home invasions in 2015. These communities also saw a rise in “robbery with intimidation,” as burglars used knives, bats, and guns to intimidate their victims.
According to OSAC, burglars often bind their victims’ hands and feet while they steal possessions, which is clearly what the men in Khlasa’s home were attempting to do.
Khlasa’s residence is located about 20 miles north of Santiago, and she was obviously aware of and prepared for the increased possibility of a home invasion.