Religious leader Asaram, who is serving a life sentence for raping a minor, has sent a mercy plea to Rajasthan Governor Kalyan Singh, seeking a reduction of his term of imprisonment. In his petition, Asaram cited old age and sought relief from the “gruelling punishment”, PTI reported.

On April 25, a Jodhpur court sentenced the religious leader to life in prison for raping a minor girl in his ashram in 2013. Asaram moved the Rajasthan High Court on July 2, but it has not yet taken up his appeal.

Governor Kalyan Singh sent Asaram’s mercy plea to Rajasthan home department for a detailed report. The department forwarded the petition to the Jodhpur Central Jail administration, which, in turn, sought a report from the district police and administration.

“We have received Asaram’s mercy plea,” Jodhpur Central Jail Superintendent Kailash Trivedi said. “We have sought a report from the district administration and police on this mercy plea.” The report will subsequently be sent to Rajasthan Director General (Prisons) Bhupendra Singh.