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Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh

The controversial Dera Sacha Sauda chief (DSS) was involved in controversies for more than a decade until he was convicted by the Panchkula court in a 2002 rape case in 2017. He was named as an accused in two murder cases and castration of his 400 followers. On 25 August 2017, Ram Rahim was convicted of rape by a CBI court. His conviction led to widespread violence from members of the DSS which left 31 members dead during clashes with police. On 28 August 2017, Ram Rahim was sentenced to 20 years in jail for rape.

Meet the controversial godmen of India: The dark side of 'babas'

Self-styled godman Asaram was on Wednesday convicted by a SC/ST court in Jodhpur for raping a teenager at his ashram in 2013. He has been given a life sentence.

But Asaram is not a one-off case of a godman accused of crime. Here’s a list of notorious spiritual leaders and influencers who were charged for a variety of criminal acts.

Compiled by: Chaitra Anand