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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Jodhpur police likely to question Asaram Bapu

Asaram Bapu is likely to be summoned by the Jodhpur police on Tuesday for questioning

Written by Sweta Dutta | Jaipur | Published: August 26, 2013 12:29:18 am

Asaram Bapu is likely to be summoned by the Jodhpur police on Tuesday for questioning after teams sent out to Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh and other locations to investigate the sexual assault allegations by a minor against him arrive in Jodhpur by late Monday evening.

The teams had set out on Friday and are expected to come back with important information that will contribute to building a water-tight case against Asaram.

Jaipur Police Commissioner Biju George Joseph told The Indian Express over the phone Sunday,“The teams are expected to reach Jodhpur on Monday evening after which we might summon the accused for interrogation in Jodhpur. If the accused does not turn up,he will lose his chance to give his defence and a team will then be sent to Ahmedabad for appropriate action in the case.”

Teams that were sent to the gurukul in Chhindwara,where the victim studied,and her native place in Shahjahanpur,have got statements that corroborate the victim’s version.

The teams have also found that while the victim had refused to be ‘exorcised’ she was forced by her parents to meet Asaram for such a ritual.

The investigating officers were looking at verifying the victim’s statement and the medical examination report is said to be not of much significance as the victim has not alleged forced sexual intercourse and therefore ‘penetration’ need not be proved.

“The charges are of molestation,indecent behaviour and a request for oral sex. There was no penetration. So in this case,medical evidence is not of much significance,” Joseph said.

Asaram reportedly has contacted his followers in Jodhpur for support and is seeking legal help. However police sources say since Asaram has been booked under Sections 376 (rape),509 (word,gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the IPC and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO),it makes for a non-bailable

offence.

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