Panchkula/Kolkata: Indian judiciary has been giving back to back spectacular verdicts. However, August 28 will be always remembered as one of golden date for Indian Judiciary, for it is not every day that the law of the land directly takes on a God man, Gurmeet Singh, alias Baba Ram Rahim, who has been sentenced in a rape case.
In a landmark judgement, a special CBI trial court awarded self styled Godman Gurmeet Singh, who took on the name Baba Ram Rahim, 20 years of imprisonment for raping two sandhvis. He is to pay compensation of Rs 15 lakh each to the two surviours, who have had to fight a legal battle for 15 long years to get justice. Initially, his news of conviction had led to riots in Panchkula, which left around 36 people dead. However, no such case of law and order was reported when the Dera Sacha Sauda chief was given the final verdict. The Messenger of God, seemed to be out of his wits and was seen sobbing, as he begged for mercy.
The judgment is being hailed, nothing short of being a landmark one, especially when the two sandhvis had taken up a mammoth of a challenge of fighting a legal battle against the most influential.
Speaking to eNewsroom about the verdict, veteran lawyer Vrinda Grover said, “This judgment is indeed a welcome one. Godmen, using their position of conviction to sexually abuse people or to con should definitely be punished. In fact, we have a section in the criminal penal code, which clearly states that if a person in a position of conviction sexually abuses his disciples, then it amounts to aggravated rape.” She further added, “This verdict will definitely set an example.”
Echoing the same was Giridih’s advocate Mita Thakur. She said, “This is a good judgment. And I think, even if defense side move to higher courts, this sentence shall remain the same. In fact chance of him get a severe punishment is higher than its exemption.”
While many were hailing the judgment, some had words of caution for parents and guardians, who seem to have blind faith on such men of God.
Member of CPI-ML’s Polit Bureau and social activist Kavita Krishnan reacted by saying , “This verdict is a welcome one as it sends across a message that justice shall prevail, despite political attempts being made to subvert the decision.”
Kavita who had led the protest against Delhi gang rape in 2012 added, “Ram Rahim’s daughter has revealed that in return for support in Haryana polls, Ram Rahim had been promised by BJP that the rape case would be completely erased. This is a shocking deal – a deal in which woman’s rights are being vouched for in exchange of votes. It is good that the deal was defeated and justice prevailed.”
Kolkata-based social activist Leena Kejriwal, who is a champion when it come to fighting against child trafficking said, “I feel more let down by the parents of kids, who leave them to serve these Godmen. How can people have such blind faith on such babas that they leave their kids at their mercy? It clearly indicates how hollow we are as humans and to what extent we can go to, just to please people who promise to deliver us from our problems.” She then added, “It’s like people have their blinkers on and refuse to see what’s right in front of them. It’s high time for us to bring about the change. People need to understand that blind faith doesn’t help. People also need to know that when their kids approach them complaining about some mischief committed, they need to look into it seriously.”
Most suggest that the change can come only when we, the people, choose not to make any Baba Ram Rahim (Gurmeet Singh), certainly not the big enough to call himself, the Messenger of God. The choice is ours, you see!