'Godman' Asaram Bapu courted several controversies in MP

HT Correspondent

Bhopal, Aug. 21 -- Self styled 'godman' and spiritual leader Asaram Bapu, who faces charges of sexually assaulting a minor girl studying in his Madhya Pradesh's Chhindwara Ashram has courted several controversies in the state earlier too.

In fact, controversies have surrounded him in the state for years. It was in Chhindwara that two children studying in the Ashram Gurukul had died in the year 2008. Five-year-old Vedant was found dead in the bathroom.

Almost at the same time, another student, Ramkrishna, had died. Though investigation later revealed that it was a teenaged student who was involved in the killings, the incident caused wide outrage and mystery remained over the motive of the youth. Sandhya, a teacher at the Gurukul had also died in suspicious circumstances.

In another incident, the self-styled godman was in the midst of controversy when he allegedly kicked a devotee who had come to seek his blessings. This incident had occurred in neighbouring Vidisha earlier this year.

The complainant, Aman Singh, had been so upset with the incident that he had approached the police.

Asaram Bapu had allegedly publicly used foul language against a volunteer during a programme in Indore last year. The volunteer was offering water to other devotees when the spiritual leader got enraged and used foul language against him. It was caught on Television cameras.

There were also allegations of land grab against him in Ratlam.

In yet another incident Dileep Pachori, a resident of Jabalpur lodged a complaint with police accusing the controversial self-styled 'godman' and disciple of poisoning his 24-year-old son Rahul Pachauri during a 'satsang' held at Jabalpur, leading to his death.

However, Jabalpur police found no criminal involvement of Asaram and his disciples in the incident.

Talking to the Hindustan Times on Wednesday superintendent of police Jabalpur Harinarayanchari Mishra said the investigation was over and no criminal element was found in the death of Rahul Pachori.

The police investigation report has been sent to the sub divisional magistrate for further action, he said.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.