In a special Jodhpur court, controversial self-styled godman Asaram and four others were convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl in August 2013. Asaram Bapu has been awarded life imprisonment till death, while the two other got 20-year term. The judgment in the case was pronounced inside the Jodhpur Central Jail. Anyhow, Asaram Bapu has received flak from all quarters for his alleged role with disciples. He was arrested in September 2013. Since then, he has been lodged in Jodhpur Central Jail. At the Jodhpur Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Court in the morning hours, Judge Madhusudan Sharma delivered the order.
The minor girl is from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahajahanpur. She was studying at his ashram at Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh. Meanwhile, Asaram Bapu has denied the rape charges. According to the victim, Asaram called her to his ashram in Manai area near Jodhpur. She was raped on the night of August 15, 2013. On August 31, 2013,Asaram was arrested and imprisoned in flown to Jodhpur and was booked under Sections 342, 376, 506 and 509 of the IPC, as well as under Section 8 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) and sections 23 and 26 of the Juvenile Justice Act.
Asaram Bapu’s followers had threatened the victim’s family to drop the charges against their spiritual leader. Although there have been allegations regarding BJP’s role, the party has distanced from the godman from 2013. Security has been tightened up so that there is no repitation of violence like the Dera godman who is presently in jail. No doubt, this verdict has been an exemplary one considering all illicit activities by self proclaimed fake god-men in India.