Preacher Daati Maharaj booked by CBI after woman complains of rape
On a complaint by a woman disciple, a case of rape and unnatural sex was filed against Maharaj, his three brothers and a woman at Fatehpur Beri police station in South Delhi
The CBI has booked self-styled preacher Daati Maharaj, for allegedly raping and having unnatural sex with an inmate of his ashram, officials said. The agency had taken over investigation in the case on the instructions of the Delhi high court, they said.
On a complaint by a woman disciple, a case of rape and unnatural sex was filed against Maharaj, his three brothers and a woman at Fatehpur Beri police station in South Delhi. On June 22, the police had questioned Maharaj, who was charged with rape of a disciple at his ashrams in Delhi and Rajasthan. The accused had claimed he was being framed in the case.
Earlier, the court had rapped police for shoddy investigation. The court, while transferring the case to the CBI, had said the manner in which police had carried out the probe "casts a shadow on the investigation". The high court had said police did not arrest the accused in the case even after recording of the complainant's statement before a magistrate under Section 164 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC).
The police had claimed before the high court that arrests were not made in the case as there were discrepancies and contradictions in the woman's statement. It had also alleged that other women, who according to the complainant were also assaulted by the accused, have denied such allegations when they were questioned.
A trial court had earlier taken strong exception to the manner in which probe was being conducted in the case, saying the investigating officer had not been able to explain the efforts made to ensure that the accused does not abscond during the investigation. It had directed the deputy commissioner of police (Crime Branch) to monitor the probe and ensure a status report is filed before the court every week.
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