Sacha Sauda chief gets temporary relief of 11 days

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Ambala, Oct 4 (UNI) Special CBI court judge R.K. Saini today extended the interim bail till October 15 of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh facing two murder and a rape case, giving him a reprieve of 11 days.

The Baba will have to appear in the court personally on the next date fixed for hearing for regular bail.

Special CBI magistrate R N Bharati, who had earlier issued notices in the three cases to the Baba, delivered copies of chargesheets submitted by the CBI accusing the Dera chief and three others of murdering journalist Ram Chander Chhaterpatti and Ranjit Singh, a former Dera employee.

The hearing was fixed for this case on October 4 but since the Baba got anticipatory bail from the High Court till today, the court fixed October 18 for hearing. The Dera chief will have to go in appeal to the special CBI judge for seeking regular bail when he appears in the court on October 15.

The court fixed October 27 as next date for hearing in the case under Section 376 IPC against the Dera chief for committing rape of a sadhvi of the dera. The counsel for him had earlier requested time to examining the chargesheet submitted by the CBI on July 30 last to the CBI magistrate.

Under orders from the special CBI Judge, the Dera chief furnished three bonds of Rs five lakh each with sureties in the court of CBI Magistrate Bharati.

The Baba after arriving in the court in his Lance Cruiser under cover of 'Z' plus security, appeared in the court of District and Sessions Judge who marked his case to the Special CBI Judge for hearing in the murder and rape cases.

As he entered the court premises accompanied with about a dozen counsels, his teeming followers surged ahead breaking open the barricades and followed him to the court despite Prohibitory orders under section 144 of CrPC which had been imposed in the court complex area.

Anshul, son of the assassinated journalist Chhatrapati appeared in the court alleging that thousands of Sacha Sauda followers gathered in the town were brought by the Dera chief to show his strength and influence to the court.

The CBI lawyers pleaded against granting interim bail and also regular bail to the Baba by expressing apprehension that if the Baba was granted regular bail, he would influence the witnesses including two sadvis and his former driver Khatta Singh.

Meanwhile, the court work remained held up till 1200 hrs under the orders of the district administration who had ordered no other work be taken untill the Baba's case was dealt with, as a security measure. The complex seemed like a police fortress with even other litigants and mediapersons denied permission to enter.

Earlier, in the morning, the Police had a tough time controlling the Baba's followers who had reached in large number at Adarshnagar where the Dera chief had stayed at the residence of one of his follower.

On conclusion of the proceedings of the court, the Baba went to the HUDA stadium where he addressed his followers and asked them to remain peaceful and return to their respective places.

UNI

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