Two Indian states in lockdown for Guru Ram Rahim's rape sentencing today

Dera Ashram in South City 2

Authorities in Haryana on Monday issued shoot at sight orders in and around the District Jail near Rohtak ahead of rape convict Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh's sentencing.

Dera owns over 250 properties nationwide out of which 131 are located in Haryana.

The two states are still on high alert after Singh's supporters reacted violently to his conviction sentence on August 25.

2014: Reports of arms training being given to followers at the Dera emerge.

The town of Sirsa, home to Dera's headquarters, is already under lockdown, BS Sandhu, Haryana's police chief, said.

Dera Sacha Sauda, which describes itself as a "selfless socio-spiritual organization", has ashrams across 10 states and union territories across India and claims to have millions followers worldwide.

It was hearing a PIL filed by a Panchkula resident Ravinder Dhull, a lawyer, who had raised law and order concerns and stated that over 1.5 lakh people had reportedly entered the district earlier despite prohibitory orders.




May 2007: Charged with hurting religious sentiments by addressing followers in Salabatpura in bhatinda by dressing like sikh guru Gobind Singh. Investigations in the case are still on. Meanwhile, a luxury vehicle was allegedly set on fire on Monday evening at Kotli village near Sirsa around the time the Dera chief's sentence was announced in court, the police said, adding they were probing if the incident involved Dera followers.

This anonymous letter written in 2002 led to an investigation by India's Central Bureau of Investigation against Gurmeet Ram Rahim. Inside the gufa, the woman found Ram Rahim watching television with a pistol by his side.

Mahajan further informed that Honeypreet accompanied Ram Rahim to the Rohtak Jail, but after about two-and-a-half hours, she was taken away.

The bench, comprising acting Chief Justice S S Saron and Justices Surya Kant and Avneesh Jhingan, directed that no FIR registered by the two states during the episode shall be cancelled without the permission of the High Court.

The court then stated that it can not pass an order for the same as it was under the purview of the state government or jail authorities to decide that. The case is still pending in a CBI special court.

"You can't go soft when some people come armed with petrol bombs and deadly weapons to indulge in arson and lawlessness", the court said. Almost 1000 dera followers have been arrested so far since Friday.

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