Delhi gang rape: Asaram Bapu denies 'controversial' comment

Pandharpur/ Jammu/ New Delhi, Jan. 8 (ANI): Spiritual leader Asaram Bapu on Tuesday downplayed his remark against the Delhi gang-rape victim, and claimed that the media had distorted his statement.

"What can I do if somebody telecast my statements after distorting it? I heard (the media saying) it will be filled with admiration for you (media) if you telecast my 15 minutes discourse. I don't want to get into this controversy," he told the media in Pandharpur.

Meanwhile, Congress leader Karat Singh termed Asaram Bapu's remark as unfortunate.

"The real meaning of the word 'Guru' (spiritual leader) is one, who dispels darkness. You can judge by yourself whether he is spreading darkness or dispelling it. Every 'Guru' is not bad. There are good gurus also. Such comments like the one by Asaram Bapu are unfortunate," he told the media in Jammu.

National Commission for Women (NCW) chairperson Mamata Sharma on her part said that the spiritual leader's comments were insensitive toward girls.

"The comments that have been made are insensitive toward girls of the country. The people of this country are already agitated after such a heinous crime," she told the media in New Delhi.

Asaram Bapu earlier landed himself in a controversy over his remark that the December 16 Delhi gang rape victim was as guilty as those responsible for the barbaric sexual assault on her.

"Only 5-6 people are not the culprits. The victim daughter is as guilty as her rapists... She should have called the culprits brothers and begged before them to stop... This could have saved her dignity and life. Can one hand clap? I don't think so," he said.

The self-proclaimed godman further said that he is against harsher punishments for the accused, as the law could be misutilised.

"We have often seen such laws are made to be misutilised... Dowry harassment law is the biggest example," he said.

The spiritual guru's remark comes at a time when the entire nation is mourning the death of the 23-year-old brave heart who died in a Singapore hospital 13 days later after the heinous crime.

The victim, a physiotherapy student, was brutally raped and assaulted in a moving bus on the night of December 16, 2012. She died of her injuries on December 29, 2012 in the multi-specialty Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore.

Her male friend, who was accompanying her that day, was also assaulted by the accused and both of them were thrown out of the bus. (ANI)