Three years back Afternoon Voice had published a story about Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh being involved in rape incidents. His lawyer Adv. Bhaskar Bhardwaj had sent us a legal notice for publishing news and articles about him. They had a problem with AV for addressing Gurmeet Ram Rahim, as an alleged criminal. We had called him alleged criminal based on various articles published on internet and other reputed publications. AV had no intention to create an intimidating environment, promotion of hate feelings. However today truth has been unveiled and he has been convicted in a rape case. Since the BJP government is ruling the centre and Haryana it remains to be seen whether they will free Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh due to the pressure imposed by people.
When AV spoke to Shrikant Shinde Shiv Sena MP he said, “BJP is supporting spiritual leaders and that is the reason that violence has spread across four states. Despite imposing section 144 people gathered on streets in support of baba. I condemn such people who are indulging in violence.”
Kapil Patil BJP MP said, “The government had taken various steps to control violence but since people had gathered in large numbers the situation turned violent. We respect the court which had given verdict in our favour.”
Jitendra Awhad NCP MLA said, “If the state government bows before dharma then such type of violence will occur. This is the reason that violence has spread and both state and centre are responsible for it.”
Arif Naseem Khan Senior Congress leader said, “We respect the verdict delivered by the court. The government was given information four days prior to the violence but they didn’t take action. This shows that the government is only supporting Baba Ram Rahim. We are not against the spiritual leaders but action must be taken against those people who are indulging in violence. Nobody is above the law.”
Shraddhand Adav,Raytecha Raja Sanghatana president, “I condemn the violence incidents occurring in Haryana. In India people when visit temple just like they remove their chappals they also put their brains outside the temple. Law is not strong and there are several loopholes. People should not support such personality. If he is an accused then action must be taken against him.”
Advocate Vandana Shah who fought this case for the editor Afternoon Voice’s editor Vaidehi, when Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh’s supporters and lawyers sent her legal notices in 2014 for writing on the same issue, for which Singh is convicted today, said, “Finally truth has prevailed and justice has been delivered. I salute all those people who boldly exposed such self-declared spiritual leader.”
Rupal Mistry director of animations said, “Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Insan is a tool being used by the RSS to control the Dalit and lower castes, and to prevent them from becoming Ambedkerites. This government has tasted their own medicine when their so called vote puller got convicted. Public and Government Properties are burned by Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh members and no action has been taken by security. Haryana security personnel must get training from Kashmiri Soldiers about how to handle crowds”.