Honeypreet Insan, whose real name is Priyanka Taneja, is the “adopted daughter” of Dera Saccha Sauda Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. Though the self-styled godman has three biological children — Amanpreet Kaur Insan, Charanpreet Kaur Insan and Jasmeet Singh — Honeypreet is the most popular among them and was believed to take over his mantle after the Dera chief’s conviction.
Honeypreet, who often refers to herself as ‘Papa’s angel’, has over a million followers on Twitter and about 5 lakh followers on Facebook . She also has a website in her name which describes her as a philanthropist, editor, actor and director. Honeypreet has also appeared in many movies alongside Ram Rahim.
Association with Ram Rahim
Honeypreet hails from Fatehabad town in Haryana and studied in a school run by the Dera management. She married Vishwas Gupta, a Dera follower, in 1999 in the presence of Ram Rahim. Gupta, however, accused Ram Rahim and Honeypreet of having an illicit relation and also alleged that their father-daughter relation was a sham. He moved the court for a divorce in 2011. He also alleged that since 2009, Honeypreet was living with Ram Rahim as his de-facto wife and that Gupta was not allowed to meet her. He also claimed that Ram Rahim threatened him against revealing anything. “I had to suffer so much under him. They filed a fake dowry case 11 years after my marriage. In the end, we had to ask for forgiveness reluctantly,” he said. The estranged husband also claimed that before 2009, only men were given top roles in the Dera management but after 2009, women, including Honeypreet started having a say in the dera affairs.
Read | Ram Rahim used to organise ‘Bigg Boss’-like show, says Honeypreet’s ex-husband. Click here
Honeypreet later rose through the ranks and became one of the most influential persons in Dera. She has always been very vocal about her association with Ram Rahim and often addresses him as ‘Guru Pa.’ There are also reports that Ram Rahim and his son Jasmeet Singh fell out because of Honeypreet’s interference. On her insistence, Jasmeet was forced to merge his business with Ram Rahim’s, which resulted in losses for Jasmeet. A senior state government officer, who met Dera chief’s family members post his conviction, told The Indian Expres that it was Honeypreet who used to give the monthly expenses to Jasmeet, Amarpreet and Charanpreet.
While the other children lived in in independent bungalows constructed within the Dera premises, Honeypreet stayed in Tera Vaas, the personal accommodation of Ram Rahim. A lift connected Ram Rahim’s room with that of Honeypreet’s. Prabhjot Singh, Deputy Commissioner, Sirsa, who inspected the Dera also added that there were no records to prove Honeypreet’s adoption. “Also, as per the adoption laws, he could not have adopted Honeypreet since he already had two daughters,” he pointed out.
Cases against Honeypreet
During the hearing on August 25, Honeypreet was seen holding Ram Rahim’s luggage at the special CBI court in Panchkula. She had even accompanied the Dera chief in the government helicopter from Panchkula to Rohtak after he was sentenced to twenty years jail in connection with the rape cases against him. She was, however, asked to sit outside the rest house of the prison, K P Singh, DGP (jails), Haryana said. The officer also refuted reports that Dera Chief had made any special request to talk to his “adopted daughter” Honeypreet. He, however, said that Ram Rahim had provided two telephone numbers to prison authorities – one of which is of Honeypreet. Read | Dera head, son fell out over Honeypreet’s proposal to merge their businesses. Click here
Reports also suggest that she allegedly “gave a signal to (the crowds) to instigate violence” after Ram Rahim’s conviction. The Haryana Police then slapped sedition charges against her for allegedly plotting Ram Rahim’s ‘escape’ bid from the court. A lookout notice has been issued against her. She was suspected to have fled to Nepal through the porous border and police along the border was kept on alert. Wanted posters of Honeypreet were pasted on walls along streets and at the police station at Sonauli in Maharajganj close to the Nepal border.
However, the Nepal CBI rubbished claims of her being in Nepal. “Some people said she was sighted in Biratnagar, some said Western part of Nepal, and some said Mugling, Kathmandu. But the fact is that she is not in Nepal; wrong information,” said DIG Pushkar Karki, Central Investigation Bureau director, Nepal.
Meanwhile, Honeypreet topped the list of 43 people wanted in connection with the violence that erupted in Panchkula after Ram Rahim’s conviction. She was the only woman on the list released by Haryana Police on its website.
Facing charges of sedition, Honeypreet was arrested by the Haryana Police on October 3.
At least 35 people died in Panchkula and six in Sira after the Dera followers went on rampage on August 25. “Until August 25, no case was registered against Honeypreet, but after the arrest of Surender Dhiman (Dera spokeperson), Honeypreet was found to be accused of provoking violence. Therefore, a case was registered against her and search was on to nab her,” BS Sandhu, DGP, Haryana said. Haryana Police have also initiated the process of declaring Honeypreet as a proclaimed offender and added that her property may also be attached. An international alert has also been issued against her. Multiple raids are being conducted in various parts in a bid to nab her.
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