Last Updated: January 24, 2023, 08:33 IST
Rape convict Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, who is out on a 40-day parole, has raised several eyebrows as he “celebrated his freedom” by cutting a cake with a sword. The Sirsa Dera chief, who is serving a jail term in Rohtak’s Sunaria jail for rape and murder, reached his Barnawa Ashram in Baghpat on Saturday after being granted a parole.
A video of Ram Rahim, shared on social media, comes at a time when several leaders have already slammed the Haryana government for granting him multiple paroles. The Dera chief’s act could invite more trouble as cutting cakes with swords are banned since it amounts to public display of weapons under the Arms Act.
According to reports, many followers of Ram Rahim joined him in the celebration. Several opposition party leaders and the Sikh groups have targetted the BJP-led Haryana government over granting the rape convict frequent paroles.
On Monday, former Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) chief Bibi Jagir Kaur lashed out at Haryana’s Manohar Lal Khattar government and also asked Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann if the Dera chief could be repeatedly released on parole then why he should not be brought to the state on a production warrant for questioning and investigation in sacrilege cases.
She questioned Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal why the Dera chief was not prosecuted and was rather let off in a blasphemy case of 2007 registered in Punjab.
The controversial Dera chief has been granted over 133 days of parole and furlough leave till 2023. Frequent paroles also raised outrage as they were either linked to elections, on grounds such as “looking after fields”, or “marriages of foster daughters”.
According to a report in India Today, the self-styled guru started addressing online satsangs, released videos, and even “blessed” politicians from election-bound states during the times he was out on parole. During the present 40-day parole, the Dera chief is likely to take part in the anniversary celebrations of Shah Satnam on January 25.
Read all the Latest India News here