New Delhi, Nov 19: Four women died and at least 200 women and children were injured during the chaos outside ashram of Sant Rampal, a self-styled godman in Hisar, Haryana.
Haryana Police on Wednesday, Nov 19 informed that Rampal's followers at his ashram at Barwala handed over the bodies of four women. However, police were yet to ascertain cause of death of these women. It was not clear whether they died in police action to evacuate the devotees guarding the ashram or some other cause.
Haryana witnessed a law and order situation as more than 20,000 people have gathered inside (most of them have been forced to stay back inside the ashram) Rampal's ashram and protected him from police. The cops on Tuesday tried to arrest Rampal who has been evading law and arrest since Monday.
What's the controversy over Rampal?
- Rampal faced legal case following a crime committed by his acolytes in 2006.
- The self-styled godman, since last four years, has evaded court appearances for 43 times. Now, he is facing a contempt case.
- He has to appear in court for the unlawful actions of his followers who apparently fired at villagers in Rohtak in 2006, killing one.
- The godman is out on bail, but the court's patience is clearly wearing thin.
- The Punjab High Court summoned him to appear before the court and the deadline ended on Monday.
- Haryana Police also slapped sedition charges against Rampal and his followers.
Sections under which cases have been filed against Rampal:
The case has been filed under Sections 121 (waging, or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the Government of India), 121A (conspiring to commit certain offences against the state) and 122 (Collecting arms etc. With the intention of waging war against the Govt of India).
Besides, the cases have also been slapped against the accused under Sections 123 (concealing with intent to facilitate design to wage war) and other charges that include attempt to murder, assault and under various Sections of the Arms Act, police said.
What happened when police went to arrest Rampal?
- Rampal, who claims himself to be a godman, used hapless women and children to protect himself.
- According to Haryana DGP, Rampal is still hiding inside his Satlok ashram.
- The situation went out of control when security forces, including the Haryana Police, surrounded the ashram complex and even tried to break one wall to get into the premises on Tuesday.
- Police officials said that four-five followers of Rampal tried to pour petrol on themselves to commit self-immolation. However, they were stopped from doing so by the police.
- Hundreds of followers of Rampal, including women and children, camped outside his ashram for nearly a fortnight to prevent security forces from entering the complex to arrest Rampal.
- Many of his followers, who left the ashram on Wednesday, told media that they were forced to stay in the ashram as Rampal's aides threatened them to face dire consequences if they leave the ashram premises.
- While ashram authorities claimed that Rampal had been moved to a private hospital Monday and that he was not inside the ashram. However, they did not disclose his whereabouts. Police officials said that they had no inputs of Rampal having left the ashram.