A special SC/ST court in Rajasthan’s Jodhpur convicted ‘self-styled’ godman Asaram and two of his four associates, Sanchita alias Shilpi and Sharad Chandra in a 2013 rape case.
The godman and his associates were held guilty of raping a 16-year-old schoolgirl in his ashram near Jodhpur in 2013.
Born Asumal Sirumalani in Sindh, now a part of Pakistan in 1941, Asaram has millions of blind followers and enjoys strong power of money and muscle.
Apart from the rape, the controversial ‘godman’ is also an accused in several other criminal cases, including illegal land acquisition, murder, sexual assault and black magic.
Take a look at the cases that Asaram is facing:
Jodhpur Rape Case
A 16-year-old girl from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahjahanpur alleged rape and sexual assault by Asaram. The teen alleged that the self-proclaimed ‘godman’ had asked her to perform oral sex in his ashram near Jodhpur in 2013.
The parents of the girl, both followers of Asaram, filed a police complaint against him. Following the complaint, he was arrested and lodged in jail.
Asaram, in jail since August 31, 2013, was charged under relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, and the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
On Wednesday, a special SC/ST Jodhpur court will pronounce its verdict in the rape case.
Surat Rape Case
After the Jodhpur rape case, more women came out with similar allegations of rape against Asaram and his son Narayan Sai.
Two sisters from Gujarat’s Surat alleged rape and illegal confinement by Asaram and his son and filed separate complaints against them.
However, despite registration of the complaint, the victims in the Surat Rape Case were not examined despite the court’s order.
The apex court in August 2017 slammed the BJP-led Gujarat government over the slow pace of trial and not following court’s orders.
Madhya Pradesh Land Grabbing Case
The year 2013 brought ‘bad-luck’ for the ‘self-styled’ godman and he ran into another trouble after the Serious Fraud Investigating Office (SFIO) sought his prosecution in a Rs 700 crore land grab case in Madhya Pradesh.
In 2000, Asaram and his son Narayan Sai had allegedly illegally grabbed the land situated along the Delhi-Pune Indsutrial Corridor in Madhya Pradesh.