Self-styled godman Asaram was on Tuesday remanded in police custody till October 19 by a local court in an alleged sexual assault case filed by two Surat-based sisters against him and his son Narayan Sai.
Magistrate V A Budh granted the police Asaram’s remand till October 19 against their plea for 14 days custody after he was produced in the court this morning amid tight security.
No one except the litigants were allowed to go inside the court premises where the hearing took place.
72-year-old Asaram was brought to the city on Monday night on a transfer warrant from Jodhpur,where he was in judicial custody on charges of raping a minor at his ashram.
The police,in their remand application,had sought 14 days’ custody of Asaram citing various reasons,including interrogation of the accused regarding the alleged crime,his medical check up and seizure of things related to the crime.
They also mentioned in the remand application that they want to investigate whether other girls in the ashram were also subjected to the same exploitation or not.
Asaram’s advocate B M Gupta,however,severely opposed the remand plea,saying that the case was filed against Asaram due to political pressure and that it was 12 years old.
Gupta told the court that his client was innocent and being framed in a false case by fabricating evidence. He said that there was no need of police remand as they have already completed primary investigations.
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 alleged 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 from Surat had come forward to register case against Asaram and Sai after family of the school girl registered a case against the senior.
His son Sai is absconding after sexual assault case was filed against him by the younger sister.