- THE GIRL'S STORY IS SHOCKING to say the least
- the young girl claims that she was molested for almost 1 hour by the godman
- we do NOT know the truth, so those who read may please make your own judgment / DECISIONS on this case
Asaram Bapu, accused of sexually assaulting a minor girl at a Jodhpur ashram, allegedly molested the victim for more than an hour and even demanded oral sex, and when she protested, the self-styled godman "threatened" to kill her parents. "He (Asaram) switched off the lights of the room and called me in from the back door. He locked the room from inside and started molesting me. When I started shouting, he threatened to kill my parents and closed my mouth," the girl stated in her complaint, on the basis of which an FIR was lodged against the controversial spiritual guru.
"He kissed me and objectionably touched me. He caressed all over my body and asked for oral sex. He was wearing no clothes. He forcibly started undressing me, and I was crying. He again closed my mouth. He continued to molest me for more than an hour," the girl said narrating her traumatic experience. "As I was leaving the room, he once again threatened me against speaking out," she added.
The victim, who hails from UP's Shahjahanpur, was a student of Class XII at Asaram's gurukul in Chhindwara, Madhya Pradesh. Describing how she reached the Jodhpur ashram, she said: "One day, I felt dizzy. My hostel warden told me that I was under the influence of 'bad souls'. She said she would talk to Asaram regarding this. On August 7, the warden rang up my home and informed that I was unwell and should be taken to some big city for treatment. On August 9, my parents came to the girls' hostel to take me away. That time the warden told them that I was under the influence of ghosts and bad spirits."
"She said Bapu had asked to take me to him as soon as possible. My father came to know that Bapu would be in Delhi on August 12. We reached Delhi on August 13 where we came to know that he was in Jodhpur. Then Bapu's key aide, who remains in the service of Bapu, asked us to reach Jodhpur. On August 14, 2013, we reached Manai village near Jodhpur where Bapu was staying. He told me that he would rid me of the ghosts," she said.
Based on the complaint, the Delhi Police booked Asaram under IPC sections 342 (wrongful confinement), 376 (rape), 506 (criminal intimidation), besides sections of the Juvenile Justice Act and the POCSO Act, on August 21. The case was later transferred to the Jodhpur police. Asaram, who was to appear before the Jodhpur police by Friday evening for questioning in the case, failed to make it, with his son claiming that he had been taken ill. "Bapu has booked a flight ticket to Delhi. He can't fly now due to his ill health. He will appear (before the police) as soon as he gets well... He will cooperate with interrogators," Asaram's son Swami Narayan Sai said in Bhopal.
In Jodhpur, police officers said the time was not ripe for the arrest of the godman and his three employees accused in the case. "A special police team would leave on Friday night for Bhopal to hear his defence and only then the question of arrest would arise," said Jodhpur Police Commissioner Biju George Joseph.
Joseph's deputy Ajay Pal Lamba, however, said there was a strong possibility of the 72year-old's arrest if he failed to come up with a convincing story supported by evidence. In Ahmedabad, Asaram' lawyer Sudhir Nanavati moved the Gujarat High Court on Friday seeking a transit bail for him. However, with Justice A.J. Desai indicating that he was inclined to reject it, Nanavati withdrew the plea.
Meanwhile, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, in an indirect attack on Asaram, called him "a demon". Speaking at a function in south Gujarat, Modi said one may be knowledgeable on scriptures or accomplished in several areas, but "if they do not respect women, society sees them as rakshasas (demons)."
With inputs from D.P. Bhattacharya in Gandhinagar and Anup Dutta in Bhopal.