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Godman arrested in Mathura on rape charges

The sadhu raped the woman multiple times and threw her out of his ashram in July after learning about her pregnancy.

cities Updated: Sep 22, 2017 22:15 IST
Hemendra Chaturvedi
Hemendra Chaturvedi
Hindustan Times, Agra
Uttar Pradesh,West Bengal,Godman
Godman Mohan Govind Das in police custody at Mathura. (HT Photo)

A West Bengal police team arrested a sadhu on the charge of raping and impregnating a mentally ill woman from the eastern state at his ashram in Uttar Pradesh’s Mathura district.

The suspect, Mohan Govind Das, of Radha Girdhari Ashram in Barsana town was produced in court on Friday and taken to West Bengal where the case against him was registered. He denied the charges and said the woman used to often stray out of the ashram.

The sadhvis, or woman devotees, of the ashram called allegations a conspiracy to defame the sadhu.

Investigators found that the 28-year-old woman’s mother had left her at the ashram about six months ago.

The sadhu raped her multiple times and threw her out of the ashram in July after learning about her pregnancy, the woman alleged in her police complaint at Bangaon, about 75km northeast of Kolkata.

She was warned with dire consequences is if she tried to return, the FIR said.

“A police from West Bengal was here and sought cooperation in arresting an accused seer running an ashram in Barsana. The accused was taken to West Bengal on transit remand,” Mathura police superintendent Aditya Shukla said.

The arrest sent shockwaves in Barsana as this is the second case of sexual assault in a religious place to hit the town recently.

A cook and a guard in the town’s popular Radha Rani temple were arrested for alleged raping a devotee from Odissa.

Besides, the sexual escapades of so-called godmen in India are in the news after Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, chief of the Dera Sacha Sauda quasi-religious sect, was convicted of raping two sadhvis this August in cases that date back to 2002.

First Published: Sep 22, 2017 22:15 IST