By Asia Samachar Team | INDIA |
Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh may soon be out on parole on counts of good behaviour, according to Indian media reports.
The self-style Indian godman who went about with the name Ram Rahim is currently serving a 20 year jail sentence and a life imprisonment for two rape cases and murder of a journalist, respectively.
Lodged at the Sunaria jail in Rohtak, Haryana, local media reports suggest that the double-rape and murder convict wants to farm his Sirsa land which is lying barren.
A move to release him would certainly catch the ire of various minority groups battling against the authorities for seemingly unfair arrests and detention.
Within the Sikh community, the plight of Scottish Sikh Jagtar Singh Johal comes to mind. Jaggi (#FreeJaggiNow), as he’s known, is still anguishing in Indian prison since his arrest in November 2017 supposedly in connection with the murder of Hindu nationalists in 2016 and 2017. He has yet to be charged.
Jagtar’s 19-month detention is just shy of a weeks the time that Ram Rahim has spent behind bars conviction of raping his ‘sadhvis’ to make them ‘pavitra’ (pure) and to grant them ‘mafi’ (forgiveness) for their past mistakes, as well as a later conviction of a murder.
In August 2017, the controversial godman – who headed a Haryana-based deraa wielding considerable political clout and financial muscle – was handed a 20 year jail term for raping two two women followers in 2002.
Just before the verdict was announced, there was a violent reaction from his followers at Panchkula in northern Haryana state that killed some 38 people.
In January 2019, Ram Rahim and three others were found guilty of murdering journalist Ramchander Chhatrapati in October 2002, and got a life imprisonment. The journalist was killed in Sirsa after his newspaper published an anonymous letter alleging that Ram Rahim had sexually exploited women at his dera’s headquarters in the town.
Dera chief Ram Rahim gets 20 years jail for rape (Asia Samachar, 28 April 2017)
Ram Rahim told sadhvis he raped that he was ‘making them pure’ – Report (Asia Samachar, 7 Sept 2017)
Jaggi’s plight makes front page news at The Times Scotland (Asia Samachar, 5 Jan 2019)