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Chargesheet against Asaram in Surat rape case

Gujarat police on Thursday filed a chargesheet against self-styled godman Asaram in a rape case, on the complaint filed by a Surat-based woman. Asaram already has a chargesheet filed against him in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, in another rape case.

india Updated: Jan 09, 2014 20:46 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Gujarat police,Asaram,Asaram rape cases

Gujarat Police on Thursday filed a chargesheet against the self-styled godman Asaram in the alleged rape of a Surat-based woman.

Besides Asaram, his wife Lakshmi, daughter Bharti and four women followers - Dhruvben, Nirmala, Jassi and Meera - have also been charge-sheeted for aiding in the act of rape and sexual harassment.

All of them have been charged under sections 376 (rape), 342 (illegal confinement) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.

The magistrate would hear their applications seeking copies of the chargesheet on January 13.

On Thursday, a court in Rajasthan also gave the go-ahead for hearing arguments in another rape case filed against Asaram.

The prosecution will commence arguments on the charges from Friday in the Jodhpur district and sessions court here, as the defence sought more time to decide its arguments on the charges.

Two Surat-based sisters have accused Asaram and his son Narayan Sai of sexual exploitation.

They had come forward to file the complaint after the Jodhpur Police booked him for the rape of a minor girl at his Ashram in August last year.

While the older sister had accused Asaram of raping her, the younger had leveled similar accusations against his son.

In Asaram's case, the complainant had accused him of sexual assaults between 1997 and 2006, when she was living at his ashram on the outskirts of Ahmedabad.

Following the complaint, Gujarat police had taken custody of Asaram from Rajasthan police for two weeks and brought him to the state for interrogation.

He was sent back to Jodhpur jail after questioning. His son Narayan Sai is lodged in a Surat jail in connection with a separate rape case against him.

First Published: Jan 09, 2014 18:59 IST