Asaram Bapu rape case verdict LIVE updates: A Jodhpur court today gave its judgment in the alleged rape case against self-styled godman Asaram Bapu. Asaram Bapu was sentenced to life imprisonment on Wednesday. Earlier, he along with two other accused was convicted by the trial court at the Jodhpur Central Jail premises. Meanwhile, Delhi and three other states have been put on high alert and Section 144 has been imposed in Jodhpur. It has been learnt that Asaram Bapu will continue to remain in jail.
Check LIVE updates of Asaram Bapu rape case verdict here:
2:50 PM: It has been learnt that Asaram Bapu broke down after Jodhpur court judge Madhusudan Sharma pronounced the verdict.
2:35 PM: Asaram Bapu has been convicted and sent to life imprisonment by Jodhpur special court in connection with a rape case.
2:05 PM: WATCH– This man has accused Asaram Bapu of killing his son allegedly for black magic rituals
— News18 (@CNNnews18) April 25, 2018
1:53 PM: The Jodhpur court judge Madhusudan Sharma is reading the quantum of punishment of 77-year-old Asaram and other co-accused in the rape case, according to reports. The proceedings is taking place in Jodhpur Central Jail.
11:52 AM: WATCH– Here is what the victim’s has to say about Asaram Bapu’s conviction
#AsaramVerdict – I believe this fake baba will get the strictest punishment. I was threatened for the past 5 years: Rape Victim’s father #LIVE UPDATES: https://t.co/t19HutnM5B pic.twitter.com/kWymoECqJa
— News18 (@CNNnews18) April 25, 2018
11:48 AM: National Commission For Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) chairman Stuti Kacker has welcomed the verdict and Asaram Bapu’s conviction. Kacker underllined that the investigation part was a difficult one due to circumstances.
11:44 AM: Jodhpur CP Ashok Rathore welcomes Asaram Bapu’s conviction. He said that this verdict is a result of good and fair investigation
11:40 AM: Former Rajasthan Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Ashok Gehlot said that people need to understand the difference between actual saints and the frauds as this creates a bad image of the country in the international arena.
11:33 AM: Asaram Bapu has so far spent 4 years and 8 months in the Jail.
11:30 AM: The special court at Jodhpur Central Jail is likely to announce the quantum of punishment against Asaram Bapu and other accused in the rape case shortly.
11:20 AM: It has been learnt that three accused, including Asaram Bapu, have convicted while two others have been acquitted.
11:15 AM: Argument over quantum punishment of Asaram and 4 other co-accused is going on the Jodhpur special court in the Central Jail.
11:05 AM: Now, Asaram could be sent to jail for 10 years or he may be sentenced to life imprisonment, which is the highest punishment.
11:00 AM: Father of the victim, who hails from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahjahanpur, said that they have got justice as Asaram is convicted. “I want to thank everyone who supported us in this fight. Now I hope he will get strict punishment. I also hope the witnesses who were murdered or kidnapped get justice,” he said after Asaram case verdict.
10:55 AM: Self-styled godman Asaram will remain in the jail as he has been found guilty in connection with raping a minor.
10:50 AM: Asaram spokesperson Neelam Dubey said that they will discuss the Jodhpur Court verdict with legal team and after that they will decide their future course of action. “We have confidence in our judiciary,” Dubey said on Asaram Bapu’s conviction.
10:43 AM: Asaram and all other accused have been convicted by Jodhpur Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Court in a rape case
10:40 AM: Special court Judge Madhusudan Sharma will shortly pronounce the verdict in the rape case against Asaram Bapu and four other accused. It has been learnt that Asaram Bapu has been found guilty.
10:35 AM: 29 people, the judge and co-accused are present in the Jodhpur Central Jail. According to reports, while 14 lawyers of Asaram Bapu and co accused are there, 2 lawyers of victim are also present. According to reports, Asaram has reached the court 15 minutes late.
10:30 AM: BREAKING from Jodhpur Central Jail. The hearing has begun.
10:15 AM: WATCH– Present scenario in Jodhpur
10:10 AM: The police had filed a petition in the Rajasthan High Court stating that the state may witness Panchkula-like violence which happened aftermath of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh verdict.
10:05 am: Jodhpur High Court had on Tuesday decided to pronounce the Asaram Bapu verdict in the Jodhpur Central jail court to avoid any law and order situation in Rajasthan. “The judgment will now be pronounced in the jail keeping law and order of the state in mind on April 25,” Additional Advocate General Shiv Kumar Vyas was quoted as saying by ANI.
10:00 AM: Gupta, who was a cook and personal aide of Asaram, was returning home from his shop on a scooter when the two motorcycle-borne assailant shot at him on Januray 11, 2015. His father Naresh Gupta said, ” I am confident that justice will be given to the victim today in Jodhpur case.”
9:55 AM: WATCH- Journalists are not allowed to enter inside the premises of the Jodhpur Central jail
— News18 (@CNNnews18) April 25, 2018
9:50 AM: One of the witnesses in the alleged Asaram Bapu rape case, Akhil Gupta was shot dead in January 2015. The security has been provided to the family of Akhil Gupta ahead of the Asaram Bapu verdict.
SP (city) Ombir Singh said, “Security has been provided to the wife and father of Gupta”.
9:40 AM: Asaram Bapu’s followers are praying at ashram in Ahmedabad.
9:30 AM: Hearing will begin shortly in Jodhpur Central Jail shortly. Defence Lawyer Sajjan Raj Surama said that he was hoping for good news even as he exhorted that Asaram Bapu will be acquitted.
9:25 AM: Mahendra Chawla said that he has faith in judicary and was confident that Asaram will be convicted. “I request judiciary that such rapists should be hanged. Though I have security, I request Centre for additional security, my life like other witnesses is constantly under threat,” says Chawla.
9:20 PM: Prayers are being held in Madhya Pradesh’s Bhopal.
9:15 AM: Asaram Bapu had allegedly raped a teenage girl. The girl was from Shahajahanpur in Uttar Pradesh and was studying at Asaram’s ashram in Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh. The victim has alleged that Asaram called her to his ashram in Manai area near Jodhpur and raped her on the night of August 15, 2013.
9:05 AM: Scene from Asaram’s ashram in Varanasi where prayers are being held ahead of Jodhpur court verdict
9:00 AM: Delhi was put on high alert ahead foo big Asaram verdict. Areas on Delhi border areas, the national capital’s boundaries and inside the city areas are under scanner. Police is keeping strict in these areas as Asaram’s supporters might gather after the court verdict.
8:55 am: “We are in touch with police forces from neighbouring states to avert any untoward incident. Senior officers from districts and SHOs of police stations concerned have been directed to keep a watch in their respective areas,” a police official said.
8:50 AM: WATCH- Here is the latest situation outside Jodhpur central jail
— News18 (@CNNnews18) April 25, 2018
8:35 AM: “We have imposed section 144 of CrPC in the city from April 21 and it would remain effective till April 30. Besides this, we have been keeping a sharp eye on Asaram’s ashrams and checking all hotels and guest houses as well as the bus and railway stations,” DCP (East) Aman Deep Singh said in Jodhpur. “We will also seal the jail on the day of judgment and would not allow anyone to get close to the jail premises,” he said.
8:35 am: The judge has reached Jodhpur Central jail.
8:30 AM: According to prosecution lawyers, Asaram, if found guilty, could be jailed for a minimum of 10 years. He may be sentenced to life imprisonment, which is the highest punishement. Asaram is also facing a rape case in Surat in Gujarat. In this case, the Supreme Court earlier this month gave five weeks time to the prosecution to complete the trial.
8:25 AM: A follower of Asaram tried to enter Jodhpur Central Jail with garland. He was detained by police.
8:20 AM: Apart from Asaram, there were four other accused in the chargesheet. They are Shilpi, Shiva, Sharad and Prakash. The chargesheet was filed on November 6 in 2013. The cases were against Asaram and co-accused are resgistered under IPC, Juvenile Justice Act and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POSCO) Act.
8:15 AM: Asaram, who was arrested on September 1, 2013, has been lodged in judicial custody since September 2, 2013. Earlier on April 7, a special court for SC/ST cases had coompleted the final arguments in cases against Asaram. The order was reserved for April 25, which is today.
8:10 AM: The victim’s father expressed hope that they will get justice. “I have full faith in the judiciary and am confident that Asaram will be given the severest form of punishment,” said the victim’s father. Security was also stepped up around the victim’s house in Shahajahanpur. A vigil was also being kept outside Asaram’s ashram at Rudrapur, police official said.
8:05 AM: “The security for the victim’s family is continuously being monitored… Two more constables will stand guard outside her house in addition to the five policemen already deployed there, and a strict vigil is being maintained on all the visitors using CCTV cameras,” Superintendent of Police K B Singh was quoted as saying by PTI.
8:00 AM: DIG Jail Vikram Singh said that they have made all arrangements ahead of the judgement day. He said that the magistrate along with court staff, Asaram and the co-accused along with the defence and prosecution counsels will remain present in the courtroom in the jail premises.
7:55 AM: WATCH- Here is all you want to know about the cases against Asaram Bapu
7:50 AM: It has been learnt that there will no media entry to the Central jail. The Jodhpur Court also dismissed a petition seeking entry of media persons in Central Jail of Jodhpur for the coverage of the judgement, reports say. Apart from this Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) will be remain imposed in Jodhpur till April 30.
7:45 AM: Keeping in the mind the Panchkula violence that had taken place following the verdict against Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, judgement will be pronounced in the case inside Jodhpur Central Jail according to reports.
7:40 AM: WATCH– Police is keeping strict vigil ahead of big Asaram Bapu verdict
7:35 AM: Fresh twists came in the case when several witnesses were attacked or they went missing since. Asaram’s personal aide was also shot dead in 2014. Another of his associate was allagedly killed in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar. In 2015, witnesses were agains attacked by unidentified assailants. One of the witnesses went missing from Lucknow.
7:30 AM: A chragesheet was filed in November, 2013. In the chargesheet, Asaram and four others had blackmailed in exchange of sexual favours. Asaram was booked under Section 8 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) and IPC sections of 342, 376, 506 and 509.
7:25 AM: In August 2013, Asaram was taken into the custody. Subsequently, theb self-styled Godman was taken to the Central Jail in Jodhpur. A potency test was conducted on Asaram. He was also produced before a Jodhpur court. Asaram tried to get bail by filing a raft of bail pleas. However, 12 of those bail pleas were rejected by Supreme Court, Jodhpur trial court and Rajasthan High Court.
7:20 AM: Another case was lodged in Gujarat. Two sisters had lodged separate complaints against the Asaram and his son Narayan Sai. Two sisters, who hail from Surat, had accused them of raping, according to reports. The Jodhpur court is set to pronounce the verdict in these two cases.
7:15 AM: Asaram has been accused in two separate cases. Two cases were registered in Gujarat and Rajasthan. In Rajasthan, a teenage girl had lodged a complaint with Rajasthan Police that she was raped by the Asaram at his ashram in Manai village near Jodhpur on the night of August 15, 2013. The girl hails from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahajahanpur.
7:10 AM: Present situation outside Central Jail premises in Jodhpur.
7:05 AM: The Union Home Ministry has sent a communication to Rajasthan, Gujarat and Haryana over the security issue. The central government has asked these states to prevent any untoward incidents. Three states have also been directed to identify sensitive places and deploy additional forces, according to a Home Ministry official said.
7:00 AM: As per the directions of the Rajasthan High Court, the trial court will deliver its verdict in the Jodhpur Central Jail premises. Asaram has been lodged in Central Jail premises for the past over four years.
6:55 AM: Security has stepped up in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Haryana and Delhi. The central government has asked Rajasthan, Gujarat and Haryana governments about the possible threat to law and order. Since Rajasthan, Gujarat, Haryana have large number of followers of 77-year-old Asaram.
Asaram was arrested from Indore and brought to Jodhpur on 1, September 2015 following a complaint of a teenage girl from Shahajahanpur in Uttar Pradesh. The girl was studying at Asaram’s ashram in Chhindwara, Madhya Pradesh. The victim had accused the godman of raping her on the night of August 15, 2013, at his ashram in Manai area near Jodhpur. Along with Asaram, four other accused in the case – Shiva, Shilpi, Sharad, and Prakash – were charge-sheeted by police under several sections of the POSCO Act, Juvenile Justice Act and IPC.