Mahendra Chawla key witness in the case.
Mahendra Chawla key witness in the case.

Panipat (Haryana): Asaram Bapu former aide and a key witness in the case, Mahendra Chawla on Wednesday requested the Centre for additional security as he believed his life, like other witnesses, is constantly under threat.

“Though I have security, I request Centre for additional security, my life like other witnesses is constantly under threat,” Chawla said. Chawla also requested the judiciary to hang rapists like Asaram. “Trust judiciary and am confident that Asaram will be convicted. I request judiciary that such rapists should be hanged,” he said. Nearly five years after rape charges were levelled against the self-styled godman, the Jodhpur Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe Court pronounced its verdict today.

People were seen offering prayers at the godman’s ashram in Madhya Pradesh’s Bhopal, Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi, Gujarat’s Ahmedabad and Punjab’s Ludhiana for his acquittal ahead of the verdict today. Earlier in the day, a follower of Asaram who had reached Jodhpur Central Jail with a garland was detained by police. Security has also been beefed up at Jodhpur jail ahead of the verdict.

The judgement in the case will be pronounced inside the Jodhpur Central Jail. Asaram’s involvement was probed in two separate cases – one from Rajasthan and the other from Gujarat. In the case registered in Rajasthan, a teenage girl from Shahajahanpur of Uttar Pradesh had accused Asaram of raping her at his ashram in Manai village near Jodhpur on the night of August 15, 2013, while in Gujarat, two Surat-based sisters lodged separate complaints against the self-styled godman and his son Narayan Sai, accusing them of rape.

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