The much-awaited verdict on Asaram Bapu was read out by Special judge Madhusudan Sharma in the Jodhpur Central Jail where 77-year-old Asaram has been kept for over four years.
Self-styled godman Asaram Bapu has been finally awarded the life sentence after being held guilty of raping a teenage girl in his ashram in 2013. The much-awaited verdict was read out by Special judge Madhusudan Sharma in the Jodhpur Central Jail where 77-year-old Asaram has been kept for over four years. The Jodhpur special court for SC/ST cases convicted two other accused, Shilpi and Sharad, and acquitted two, Prakash and Shiva. The court has awarded life imprisonment to Asaram while the two other convicts have been each sentenced to 20 years in jail.
Police had stepped up security around Asaram’s ashrams to prevent the kind of violence that was unleashed by followers when another so-called godman, Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim, was convicted of rape last August. Arguments for the quantum of sentencing were earlier held inside the heavily fortified jail premises, where the trial court delivered its verdict in accordance with the directions of the Rajasthan High Court.
The Jodhpur Special Court judgement found Asaram guilty under sections include trafficking, criminal intimidation, wrongful confinement, gang rape. Considering all the charges mentioned above, Asaram Bapu will have to spend rest of his life behind bars. The Court also mentioned sections under which Asaram was found guilty and also the reason behind his conviction.
Here is what the Jodhpur Special Court judgement copy says on the self-styled godman’s sentencing:
1. Self-styled guru Asaram Bapu has been given a life sentence under Section 6 of the POCSO, this means he will spend the rest of his life behind bars. Asaram has been convicted under sections 370, 376, POCSO, 120 B, 342 and 354. These sections are — Sexual Assault, Outraging a woman’s modesty, POCSO, wrongful confinement and criminal conspiracy.
2. Under the section 370 of the Indian Penal Code, Asaram Bapu has been awarded 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of Rs 1 lakh.
3. Under section 342 of the IPC, the guilty is confined to 1 year of imprisonment and a fine of Rs 1000.
4. Under section 506 of the IPC, Asaram Bapu will have to serve one-year imprisonment and give a fine of Rs 1000.
5. Under section 376 (2) of the IPC, Asaram Bapu has been awarded life imprisonment and a fine of Rs 1 lakh.
6. Under Section 376 (D) of the Indian Penal Code, the spiritual guru is sentenced to life.
7. For violating POCSO act, Asaram Bapu will be confined to 6 months of imprisonment.
Asaram was arrested in Indore and brought to Jodhpur on September 1, 2013. He was under judicial custody since September 2, 2013. Asaram is also facing a rape case in Surat in Gujarat in which the Supreme Court earlier this month gave five weeks time to the prosecution to complete the trial. Asaram unsuccessfully moved 12 bail applications, of which six were rejected by the trial court, three by the Rajasthan High Court and three by the Supreme Court.