In jail for allegedly sexually assaulting a minor in his ashram, self-styled godman Asaram is in for more trouble in Himachal Pradesh, as his more property has now come under government scanner, following fresh complaints of land encroachment in some of his ashrams.
(The ashram of self-styled godman Asaram at Nadaun in Hamirpur, which has come under the
scanner of the HP government. HT Photo)
“We have sought details on ashrams and land owned by the trust headed by Asaram,” revenue minister Kaul Singh Thakur told the Hindustan Times. “There are some complaints of encroachments and the revenue officials are looking into it,” he added.
The Asaram Trust owns Moblughat ashram in Nadaun subdivision of Hamirpur which is spread over 14 kanals and 17 marlas. A major chunk of land was donated by locals to the Yog Vedanta Samiti. There is a dispute on about two kanals of land being encroached by the trust.
Asaram’s followers have set up another ashram in Samoh village area of the district, which has an area of one kanal, donated by locals.
The land bought by Asaram’s followers in Nurpur subdivision has run into controversy. The locals have accused the management of encroaching upon the land.
“An inquiry was conducted into the complaints, the report of which is awaited,” Kangra deputy commissioner C Palarasu said.
Last month, chief minister Virbhadra Singh had ordered a probe into the land encroached by the ashram in Paonta Sahib. There were complaints that land had been bought by the ashram in violation of Section 118 of the Himachal Pradesh Tenancy and Land Reforms Act, 1972, that forbids non-agriculturist Himachalis to purchase agricultural land in the state. The ashram has been constructed in Kunjo Matralyion in Paonta Sahib subdivision of Sirmaur district.
The probe established that the union government was the actual owner of 14 bighas on which a portion of the ashram has been set up.
It was established in the probe that the evacuee land during the partition of India and Pakistan was given to Asaram, but it was withdrawn last month, thus the union government is the actual owner. The government gave orders to seal the land encroached upon by the ashram.
The ashram of self-styled godman Asaram at Nadaun in Hamirpur, which has come under the scanner of the HP government.