Asaram Convicted In 2013 Rape Case, Gets Life Imprisonment

A Jodhpur court convicted ‘godman’ Asaram of raping a 16-year-old minor in 2013.

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India
8 min read
Jodhpur court convicts Asaram in 2013 rape case.
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A Jodhpur trial court sentenced self-styled godman Asaram to life imprisonment on Wednesday, 25 April, in a 2013 rape case involving a 16-year-old girl. He was convicted under IPC Section 376 and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO).

Snapshot
  • Two others sentenced to 20 years each in jail
  • Security heightened in Rajasthan & neighbouring states

LIVE: #AsaramConvicted Rape Culture and the Cults of The Godmen #RapistAsaram #RapistRamRahim With Hartosh Singh Bal and Anurag Tripathi

Posted by The Quint on Tuesday, April 24, 2018
2:41 PM, 25 Apr

"Life Imprisonment Verdict is a Huge Victory": Victim's Lawyer

The victim’s lawyer Poonam Chand Solanki hailed the court’s verdict calling it a “big step”.

1:40 PM, 25 Apr

Landmarks Named After Asaram to Be Richristened, MP CM Assures Bhopal

Following the conviction of Asaram in a rape case, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the places named after the controversial godman would be rechristened.

Nobody is above the law, Chouhan said and promised "appropriate action" on an activist's demand that two places in Bhopal named after 77-year-old Asaram be renamed.

"No one is above the Constitution, the law, and the public sentiments. It is a country where the name of Aurangzeb Road has also been changed. Soon, we will take appropriate action on this matter too," Chouhan said.

Bhopal has two places named after Asaram -- a road crossing and a bus stand, both located near the godman's ashram near the Raja Bhoj Airport on the city outskirts.

Activist Rachna Dhingra, who works for the survivors of the 1984 Union Carbide disaster, made the demand in a video on social media.

"I am asking the chief Minister who claims to be a big proponent and protector of girls' rights that the names of this crossing and bus stand be changed," she said.

Another activist, Akshay Hunka, tagged the chief minister in his tweet and asked to spell out the government's stand on Dhingra's demand.

Replying to it, Chouhan assured to take appropriate action

11:59 AM, 25 Apr

Politicos, Activists Hail Verdict

Politicians and activists welcomed the Jodhpur court's verdict awarding self-styled godman Asaram life sentence for raping a teenage girl in his ashram five years ago and also hailed the resilience of the victim and her father for pursuing the case.

"I welcome the judgement. In this case the witnesses were attacked, one was killed. The victim and her father were threatened, they were forced to leave their home. They were displaced. But today their fight for justice has been vindicated. What is worse is that this godman used the 'bhakti' of these followers to abuse their believes," said CPI (M) Politburo member Brinda Karat.

"The time has come when people should be able to differentiate between the actual saints and the frauds, as this creates a bad image of the country in the international arena," Congress leader Ashok Gehlot said.

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights said despite the child being a minor, the new ordinance that allows courts to invoke the death penalty in such cases will not be applicable in this case.

"We welcome this judgement, more so because the perpetrator of this crime is a very powerful person who held a position of trust, the devotees go to these godmen when they are in trouble and the guru must protect them and not sexually assault them. The ordinance will have a prospective effect not a retrospective effect," said NCPCR Chairperson Stuti Kacker.

10:19 AM, 25 Apr

'Hard Work Has Paid Off': Jodhpur DCP Amandeep Kapoor

The DCP of Jodhpur, Amandeep Kapoor lauded the decision, stating that he was glad with the way the verdict had turned out.

I can say that hard work from everyone has finally paid off. We all are really happy with this decision. I need media’s support to get the correct version out there to the supporters of Asaram.

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