A special CBI court on Saturday granted a month-long exemption to the Dera Sacha Sauda chief to travel abroad for the promotion of his upcoming movie, MSG-2.
The Sirsa-based Dera head, Gurmeet Ram Rahim, is accused of raping two of his women followers (sadhvis) in the Dera. He is also the prime accused in the murder case of his former follower, Ranjit Singh and a journalist, Ram Chander Chhatarpati, and is facing trial in the special CBI court.
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His first movie, ‘MSG-The Messenger’, was embroiled in controversy following objections by the Censor Board and was eventually released on February 13 this year. “The second part of the movie is slated to be released soon and the Dera chief had sought permission to visit various countries, including the US, UK, Canada and New Zealand for its promotion. The court has granted him exemption from June 7 to July 3,” said the Dera chief’s counsel, Vishal Garg Narwana.
This will be the Dera chief’s third trip abroad in the past five months. He was granted exemption to promote his first movie in February, and in May he visited quake-hit Nepal in connection with relief work.
In another development, the special CBI court dismissed the application of the Dera Chief seeking re-examination of the letter allegedly written by one of the rape victims, by a private forensic expert. The Dera Chief had alleged that there was no mention of ‘rape’ in the letter.
“The letter was already sent for forensic examination once in April, and the report of the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL), Chandigarh was duly submitted in the court. The Ddefence had exhausted their opportunity, and the court had closed the evidence in the case. So, we argued that there was no need for re-examination of the letter,” said the CBI’s counsel H P S Verma.
The court had earlier dismissed the Dera Chief’s application to seek summons for the alleged rape victim in order to take fresh specimens of her signature for forensic analysis. The CFSL expert had stated in a report that the samples were insufficient to determine if the letter was written by her. The next hearing of the case will be on July 4.