Congress leader Digvijaya Singh on Tuesday alleged that people in “saffron robes” were committing rapes in temples, harming the reputation of the Sanatan Dharma, or ancient religion, ANI reported.

“Today, people are wearing saffron clothes and raping, rapes are happening inside temples,” Singh said at a gathering of ascetics in Madhya Pradesh’s capital Bhopal. “Is this our religion? Those who have defamed our ‘Sanatan Dharma’, not even god will forgive them.” The event was organised by the Madhya Pradesh Adhyatmik Vibhag, or spiritual department, of the state government.

Though the Congress leader did not name anyone, his remarks came at a time Bharatiya Janata Party leader Chinmayanand is being investigated for allegedly raping and sexually harassing a law student in Uttar Pradesh. The woman from Shahjahanpur district has accused the former Union minister of blackmailing and sexually assaulting her for more than a year.

On Sunday, the woman claimed that she possessed about 35 videos that will implicate Chinmayanand. The woman said she used to wear glasses with a hidden camera when she was called to the former BJP MP’s residence to give him “a massage”.

At the meeting in Bhopal, Digvijaya Singh also claimed that the slogan “Jai Shri Ram” had been taken over by people with political interests. He corrected the chant, saying it should be “Jai Siya Ram”. “When we raise the slogan in the name of Lord Ram, why do we forget Sita?” India Today quoted him as saying.

At the event, Hindu religious leaders demanded permanent allotment of land for the construction of temples. Religious leader Namdev Tyagi, also known as “Computer Baba”, raised the demand on behalf of the other preachers. “The temples should also be given free electricity and saints should be given old-age pension,” he said.

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath said if land can be given to industrialists then it can also be given to Hindi religious leadders. They will not have to raise these demands in the future, Nath added.

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