Jaipur: The verdict in the 5-year-old sexual assault case lodged against self-proclaimed godman Asaram Bapu may come by the end of this month as both sides- prosecution and defense - have completed their final arguments. The SC/ST court in Jodhpur may give the verdict on the case on April 25. Asaram is currently lodged in Jodhpur Central Jail.
The court of judge Madhusudan Sharma heard the arguments from both sides for nearly five months.
The police had arrested Asaram Bapu on August 31, 2013 and he has been lodged in Jodhpur central jail since then.
The 76-year-old religious preacher has been accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old schoolgirl who studied at Asaram’s ashram in Madhya Pradesh’s Chhindwara and stayed in a girls’ hostel there.
The girl had made a complaint at a police station in Delhi on August 20, 2013 and the spiritual leader has since then denied the allegation.
When Asaram was brought to the court, he told the reporters it was a good thing that Bollywood actor Salman Khan had obtained bail.
“Salman has promised to me that he would give up bad habits of smoking and having too much coffee,” said Asaram.
He claimed that he met the actor several times when he was lodged in Jodhpur Central Jail. The actor’s barrack was close to that of Asaram.
“I asked him to quit smoking and coffee. He promised me he would follow my advice,” said Asaram.
Salman Khan had been convicted in a 19-year-old blackbuck poaching case and sentenced to five-year imprisonment on Thursday. He was however granted bail on Saturday. The actor remained behind bars for more than 50 hours and was cheered by fans outside the jail when he came out. He left for Mumbai on Saturday.
First published: April 8, 2018