Roughly 16,000 people once participated in Keith Raniere's professional development program NXIVM, and in that number, as we see on HBO's The Vow, airing on Fox Showcase from Sep. 20, included a handful of celebrities. One Hollywood star who became devastatingly aware of the cult's darker secrets was Dynasty's Catherine Oxenberg (shown above with daughter India and ex-husband Casper Van Dien in 2007). The actress brought her daughter India into the group before knowing the full extent of Raniere's abuses. After years of mistreatment, India left NXIVM after Raniere's arrest and has been keeping her profile low ever since.
In 2011, Catherine introduced India, then 19, to NXIVM, believing that the company's self-help courses would her daughter start her business and transition into adulthood. Little did she know that the multi-level marketing scheme had also been a funnel for Raniere to recruit sexual partners. Before NXIVM's legacy went tumbling down, India was branded and indoctrinated into NXIVM's sex slave cult, DOS. She had been pressured into maintaining a 500-calorie-a-day diet and into having a sexual relationship with the founder. Smallville actress Allison Mack was her "master." Catherine fought to get her daughter out of the cult — in 2017, a NXIVM defector reached out to the Dynasty star with concerns about India's condition.
In Aug. 2018, Catherine revealed that India had left the cult around June of that year after Raniere's arrest and NXIVM's shutdown. She's been vocal about the cult's impact on her family, releasing a book (Captive: A Mother's Crusade to Save Her Daughter from a Terrifying Cult in 2018) and a dramatised Lifetime movie (Escaping the NXIVM Cult: A Mother's Fight to Save Her Daughter in 2019) which both illustrated NXIVM's dark and predatory side.
According to Catherine, India has plans to write a book about her experience in NXIVM, but the details and release date are unknown. "I think it's important as part of India's healing process, as part of her reclaiming her sense of autonomy," Catherine told Access Hollywood in 2019. "Feeling empowered as a woman and not as a victim anymore. She's been bantered around and exposed so much in the press, largely at my hands, but it was the only recourse I had as far as getting her out."
India herself hasn't been in the news since leaving the cult. However, her mother has kept the press in the loop, telling Good Morning America that India had "done a lot of healing" and was now "in a really empowered place." According to Page Six, she reportedly left NXIVM to be in a relationship with Patrick D'Ignazio, a chef at the Double Zero restaurant in New York City. India announced her engagement on Instagram in Oct. 2019.