Alwar-based Falahari maharaj accused of rape, victim motivated by Ram Rahim case
The self-styled godman, who also has an ashram in Bilaspur, allegedly threatened the woman to not disclose the incident to anyone, citing his influence.india Updated: Sep 21, 2017 13:58 IST
A 58-year-old self-styled godman in Rajasthan’s Alwar allegedly raped a 21-year-old law student after promising her to make her a judge, police said on Thursday, the latest in a series of scandals involving dubious faith leaders.
Police said the man – Alwar-based Kaushlendra Falahari Maharaj who commands a strong following across India – allegedly raped the woman devotee on August 7 when she went to his ashram to offer her first stipend as a token of respect. The woman, a resident of Bilaspur in Chhattisgarh, lodged an FIR and state police took up the case on September 11.
“The family members of the victim have been devotees of the Maharaj for the past two decades. Recently, the woman, who is a law student, joined an internship at a company through the godman’s recommendation…. she came to Alwar to give the Maharaj Rs. 3,000 that she got as a stipend,” said Shishram Meena, station house officer, Aravali Vihar police station, Alwar.
Police said he allegedly raped her during this stay at the ashram in Alwar.
The allegations come roughly a month after Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted for raping two women devotees 15 years ago. police said Singh’s conviction motivated the woman to make the complaint.
“She was raped by the baba on the pretext of making her a judge. The girl came back to Bilaspur and narrated the whole incident to family members,” said additional superintendent of police, Bilaspur, Archana Jha.
Rajasthan police added that the self-styled godman, who also has an ashram in Bilaspur, allegedly threatened the woman to not disclose the incident to anyone, citing his influence.
“The woman has said in the complaint that following the conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim, she got courage and decided to report the matter to the police,” added Meena.
The accused was admitted to a private hospital on Wednesday. “Alwar police have taken up the investigation and we will also be speaking with the victim to know more about the case. As of now, we haven’t been able to question the godman as he is admitted in a hospital,” said Meena.
First Published: Sep 21, 2017 13:08 IST