Chandigarh, Nov 7 : The Manohar Lal Khattar government in Haryana on October 24, granted a day’s parole to controversial Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim, who is serving a 20-year jail sentence for raping two of his disciples and has been denied bail several times by the courts.
Sources privy to the development told IANS that Ram Rahim was granted parole on his wife Harjit Kaur’s plea that his mother Naseeb Kaur, 85, suffering from a heart disease was seriously ill.
The Dera chief met his mother, who is hospitalised in Gurugram, officials confirmed on Saturday. He was taken under heavy security to the Gurugram hospital where he stayed during the day and was brought to the jail in the evening, a police official said.
The 52-year-old is currently lodged at the high-security Sunaria jail in Rohtak, 250 km from state capital Chandigarh.
His bail pleas have been rejected by the Courts several times. On April 24, his three-week parole to meet his ailing mother was rejected on two counts. First, the parole could create law and order problems in the state at the time of his release and surrender later.
Second, a report by a panel of doctors, who examined his mother, said she was suffering from a heart disease, but was not in critical condition.
In June 2019, Ram Rahim Singh had withdrawn his parole plea after the state BJP government was cornered by opposition parties for favouring the self-styled godman, who sought parole for 42 days to tend to his agricultural fields at his sect’s headquarters in Sirsa town.
Also, the high court had in May last year rejected his parole plea for attending the wedding ceremony of his foster daughter.
Ram Rahim was sentenced to 20 years in jail in August 2017 for raping two women.
A special CBI court in Panchkula January last year also sentenced him and three others to life imprisonment for the murder of a journalist over 16 years ago.
His conviction on August 25, 2017, had led to violence in Panchkula and Sirsa, leaving 41 people dead and over 260 injured.
Ram Rahim was patronised by political leaders and parties in Punjab and Haryana for nearly two decades due to his ability to influence the votes of his followers.