Narayan Sai, the son of religious leader Asaram, was on Friday convicted of rape by a sessions court in Surat, PTI reported. The court will pronounce the quantum of sentence on April 30.
In 2013, two sisters from Surat had filed separate rape complaints against Asaram and Sai. One of them had accused Narayan Sai of repeated sexual assaults when they lived at Asaram’s ashram in Surat between 2002 and 2005.
“Two chargesheets were filed against 35 persons,” Hindustan Times quoted Sai’s lawyer Kalpesh Desai as saying. “The prosecution had produced 53 witnesses and documents as evidence. The defense had also produced 14 witnesses.”
Of the 11 accused in the case, six were acquitted, PTI reported. Sai’s aides, Dharmishtha alia Ganga, Bhavna alias Jamuna and Pavan alias Hanuman, were found guilty for taking part in a conspiracy. Sai’s driver Rajkumar alias Ramesh Malhotra was held guilty for harbouring an offender.
Dharmishtha and Bhavna had been accused of putting the complainant in illegal confinement and thrashing her on Sai’s instructions, as well as trying to brainwash her on having a relationship with Sai. Pavan had been accused of taking the complainant to Sai’s room.
Sai was arrested from Pipli near Kurukshetra in Haryana in December 2013. Four of his aides were also held in connection with the case.
In April 2018, a Jodhpur court had sentenced Asaram to life imprisonment in another rape case filed in Rajasthan.