Ex-followers burn down part of Asaram's ashram in Gujarat
A portion of self-styled godman Asaram Bapu's ashram was burnt down in Pariya village at Pardi taluka in Gujarat by a group of ex-followers, who are upset after allegations of sexual assault surfaced against him, police said on Tuesday.
On Monday, some people who had provided land to Asaram for building his ashram in this remote tribal area burnt down a part of the structure, they said.
They had earlier donated land to Asaram, but are no longer his supporters after the allegations of sexual assault resurfaced against him and his son Narayan Sai, they said.
Surat Police had recently registered complaints filed by two sisters - one against Asaram and another against his son Narayan Sai - of rape, sexual assault, illegal confinement and other charges. The complaint against Asaram was transferred to Chandkheda police station in Ahmedabad as the incident took place in his ashram here. The case is going on in Gandhinagar court as Chandkheda area falls in Gandhinagar district.
The elder of the two sisters, in her complaint, had accused Asaram of sexual assault between 1997 and 2006 during the time she had been living in his Ashram on the outskirts of Ahmedabad city. The younger sister had filed a complaint against Sai, accusing him of repeated sexual assault between 2002 and 2005 when she was living in their Surat Ashram.
The whereabouts of Sai are not known.
Both Asaram and Sai had filed petitions in the Gujarat High Court seeking quashing of sexual assault complaints against them. Sai has already filed for anticipatory bail in a court in Surat.
Earlier, Asaram was arrested by Jodhpur police in a sexual assault case filed against him by a school girl studying in his ashram. The two sisters had come forward to register case against Asaram and Sai after family of the brave schoolgirl registered a case against the senior. His son Sai is absconding after sexual assault case was filed against him by younger sister.