Asaram hospitalised after complaining of chest pain

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Jodhpur (Raj), Feb 17 (PTI) Self-styled 'godman' Asaram, who is serving a life sentence in a rape case, was hospitalised on Tuesday night after he complained of chest pain and breathing difficulty, officials said.

Superintendent of the MDM Hospital, MK Aseri, said that a team of the cardiology department conducted ECG and other tests and Asaram is currently under observation.

“All the reports were normal. He has been kept in the CCU under the observation of cardiologists. Repeat tests will be conducted on Thursday, after which the team of doctors would decide the next course of action”, Aseri said.

Several followers of Asaram gathered outside the MDM Hospital on Wednesday morning, and police had to use force to prevent them from entering the premises.

Jail authorities first took him to the MG Hospital for a check-up. Though the reports were found to be normal, he continued to complain of chest pain, following which he was taken to MDM Hospital amid tight security, the officials said.

According to senior cardiologist Sanjeev Sanghvi, Asaram has been kept under observation due to comorbidities.

“He said that he had an angiography long back at AIIMS. If there was a need for angiography again, we would proceed subject to his consent,” he said.

Asaram was sentenced to jail till death in April 2018 for sexually assaulting a teenager in his ashram. Two other convicts are out on bail following the suspension of their sentence.

The teenager had said in her complaint that Asaram had called her to his ashram in Manai area near Jodhpur and raped her on the night of August 15, 2013.

The 16-year-old girl from Shahjahanpur in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh was studying at Asaram's ashram in Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh.

Asaram, like the two other co-accused, had challenged his sentence in the high court in July 2018. The next hearing in the matter is on March 9.

He, however, has not yet moved any plea seeking suspension of his sentence. PTI CORR RT RT