In further setback for Asaram Bapu, the Supreme Court ordered the registration of a new First Information Report (FIR) against the self-styled godman for filing fake documents in connection with his health.
The top court also slapped a fine of Rs. one lakh on him, besides turning down his fresh plea for bail on health grounds.
Asaram is in jail since 2013 after he was named in two rape cases filed by police in Jodhpur, where he had allegedly assaulted the minor girl. Asaram, who has lakhs of followers, denies the charges.
The apex court’s bench headed by Chief Justice of India Jagdish Singh Khehar remained resolute on its decision and refused to modify its earlier order that denied bail to Asaram.
On August 3, 2013, the Jodhpur Police had arrested Asaram in connection with the rape case. It since 2013, the self-styled Godman is in prison. A teenager had accused Asaram of sexually assaulting her during celebration in a village near Jodhpur ashram.
The Gujarat Government had earlier told the Supreme Court division bench that the rape case registered against Asaram would very likely proceed in an expeditious manner, adding that the trial would be completed within six months so the bail should not be granted to him in the case.
Although Asaram’s lawyer admitted that the document was not genuine but the court refused to let him off with apology and directed that FIR be lodged and all people responsible for filing forged documents be probed and criminal proceedings be initiated against them.
Pleading for bail, Asaram contended that he wanted to undergo ayurvedic treatment in Kerala for which he needed bail.
Additional solicitor general Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Rajasthan government, said the state was ready to provide all possible treatment to Asaram at the hospitals in the state and he should not be released on bail.