Gujarat court rejects Asaram’s bail plea

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Ahmedabad, October 30:   A Gandhinagar court on Wednesday rejected self-styled godman Asaram’s bail application in the sexual assault case lodged against him by one of the two Surat-based sisters.

Sessions judge D.T. Soni rejected Asaram’s bail plea on the grounds that the investigation in the case lodged against him is at a “crucial juncture” and the allegations against him are of “serious nature.”

Recently, the Surat police registered two complaints — one against Asaram and another against his son Narayan Sai — for rape, sexual assault, illegal confinement and other charges, as alleged by the two sisters.

In her complaint, the elder of the two sisters accused Asaram of repeated sexual assault between 1997 and 2006 during the time she lived in his ashram on the outskirts of Ahmedabad city.

The 72-year-old Asaram was brought to the city earlier this month on a transit remand from a Jodhpur court, where he was lodged in a jail since August, in another sexual assault case.

He was grilled by Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up by city police commissioner to probe the complaint against him. Last week, he was taken back to Jodhpur.

His son, Narayan Sai, against whom the younger of the two sisters has registered a complaint of sexual assault, is absconding and Surat police are searching for him across the country.

Meanwhile, one Jaswantika Chaudhary, a security woman stationed at Asaram’s ashram here, was granted anticipatory bail by Soni in connection with the case on the grounds that her role in the incident was minimal. She was also named as an accused in the complaint lodged against Asaram.

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