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HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

Asaram ‘purifies’ jail cell with Gangajal

Suresh Vyas, Hindustan Times  Jodhpur, September 03, 2013
First Published: 20:20 IST(3/9/2013) | Last Updated: 15:49 IST(4/9/2013)

Even in jail and surrounded by crooks and criminals, self-stlyed godman Asaram has not forgotten his “holy” ways.

Sent to jail on Monday over charges of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl, the first thing Asaram did was “purify” his cell with Gangajal the moment he stepped into the barracks of the Jodhpur central jail.

A jail official revealed to Hindustan Times that Asaram was carrying Ganga waters in a container kept in a bag with him.

“Asaram was carrying a bag when he entered the jail. Soon after entering the barrack, he sprayed some water from Ganga river in every corner,” the jail official said seeking anonymity.

A local court had remanded him in judicial custody for 14 days in the case which has riveted the nation where godmen have large followers.

Asaram has filed a bail plea the verdict on which is likely to be delivered on Wednesday.

Asaram’s counsel filed the application on Tuesday before the district and sessions judge (Jodhpur rural) also seeking “homemade” food with herbs.

He has also demanded medicated food, material for worship and fresh clothes to pursue his religious routine.

“Asaram has a fixed daily routine. This routine should be allowed to him in the jail too,” Manendra Singh, a counsel for Asaram, pleaded before the court.

The tainted religious leader has been lodged in barrack number 1 of the jail were former cabinet minister of Rajasthan, Mahipal Maderana, was lodged in connection with murder and kidnapping case of nurse Bhanwari Devi.

The official said Asaram, lodged with four under trials, passed some time by reading a religious book and went to sleep at around 11.30 pm.

He woke up early at around 5 am. After chanting mantras, he demanded fresh water for bath and performed some religious activities. He also demanded some newspapers after which jail authorities provided him some local news papers.

Asaram denied jail breakfast and consumed only Ganga water, said the jail official.

“We are treating him as a normal jail inmate and providing facilities as per guidelines of the Rajasthan jail manuals” said jail superintendent Rakesh Mohan Sharma.

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