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Godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim convicted in ‘Rape case’

Godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim convicted in ‘Rape case’
Photo: PTI

Panchkula:  Special CBI court convicted Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh of raping two ‘Sadhvis’ (female followers).

After 200 hearings spread over 10 years and numerous stay orders of higher courts, the Dera chief who was charged with the offence of rape of a female devotee in 1999, was on Friday held guilty by the Special CBI Court of Panchkula.

He will be kept in judicial custody and the quantum of punishment will, however, be announced on August 28. He faces up to 7 years in jail.

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF) and the state police were present inside the premises of the court, when Justice Jagdeep Singh read out the verdict.

Despite charges of murder, conspiracy and rape that he faces, the controversial godman-turned-actor reached the court with a 200-car convoy.

Power supply has been disconnected and internet and mobile services were disconnected.

Security forces are dispersing about 50 to 60 thousand Dera Sacha Sauda supporters.

Since Wednesday, parts of Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh have been under a security lock down as 200,000 followers of Ram Rahim massed in Panchkula ahead of the verdict in the sexual exploitation case against him.

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The Dera followers made it to Panchkula over the past three days despite prohibitory orders under CrPC Section 144 being in force.

Supporters began celebration based on rumours that the sect chief has been acquitted.

The sexual exploitation case was registered against Dera chief in 2002 by the CBI on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court after anonymous letters were circulated about the alleged sexual exploitation of two ‘Sadhvis’ (female followers) by Singh.

With agencies inputs