In a shocking development, Haryana Police has recommended parole for jailed Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, who is serving life imprisonment after being convicted in two rape cases and murder of a journalist.
The development comes a day after Ram Rahim, who is currently lodged at Sunaria jail in Rohtak, sought parole for over a month for farming at his fields in Haryana's Sirsa.
Meanwhile, Sirsa's Superintendent of Police Dr Arun Singh said on Monday that they have not yet given their report to the Sirsa deputy commissioner as various formalities have to be completed before doing so.
"The report will be prepared taking into account merits and demerits of the parole, if granted. On a routine basis, we prepare reports on parole applications based on merits and demerits of each case," he said over phone.
Commenting on the development, Haryana Minister Anil Viz said he can get parole as it his right like another other prisoner.
"There is nothing wrong in giving him parole even though he has been convicted. The parole rule must be the same for all. Like other people gets parole if he has behaved properly in the jail, he can get parole. Don't join everything to election, parole is his right like any other prisoner," Viz said.
Another minister, KL Panwar said all convicts are entitled to parole after 2 years.
"All convicts are entitled to parole after 2 years. If a convict has good conduct in jail, it's mentioned by superintendent in his report to local police. It goes to Commissioner after verification, he takes final call," Panwar was quoted as saying by ANI.
Following his application for the parole for 42 days, the jail superintendent has written to the Sirsa district administration. In a letter dated June 18, the official sought a report whether releasing Gurmeet on parole would be feasible or not.
In the communique, the jail superintendent has mentioned that Gurmeet's conduct in the jail has been good and he has not violated any rule.
The district administration has been asked to submit a report to Commissioner, Rohtak Division, with a copy marked to the jail superintendent.
On receiving the letter, Sirsa Police has approached the Revenue Department to ascertain how much land the Dera chief owns.
"We have asked the Revenue Department to provide record as to how much land is in his name. The details are awaited," Deputy Superintendent of Police, Sirsa, Rajesh Kumar told PTI over phone.
In August of 2017, the Dera chief was sentenced to 20 years in jail for raping two women. A special CBI court in Panchkula had in January this year also sentenced him and three others to life imprisonment for the murder of a journalist over 16 years ago.
With PTI Inputs