The bail application of self-styled godman Asaram Bapu, who is lodged in a prison in Jodhpur, will be heard in the sessions court here today. His lawyer had yesterday sought bail on the grounds that Asaram was ill.
Asaram, accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl at his ashram, was remanded to 14-day judicial custody by a local court in Jodhpur on Monday. The police who questioned him for an entire day claim they have strong evidence against him.
Earlier, Jodhpur Police said they are clear that they had enough evidence against Asaram Bapu in a case that is 'purely criminal' in nature. "We have gathered sufficient evidence in the last ten days. Whatever has been said by the victim, we have collected the evidence which collaborate with her statement. We are making it a foolproof case," said Deputy Commissioner of Police Ajay Pal Lamba.
"There is no conspiracy. It's a pure criminal case. It is purely a criminal act. On the part of the police, whatever investigation and action is to be taken in such a case, we are doing that. Whatever the accused wants to say, he is free to say," he added.
Asaram has been booked under Sections 376, 342, 506 and 509 of the IPC, Section 8 of the Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) and Sections 23 and 26 of the Juvenile Justice Act. Besides the summons served on Asaram Bapu, notices have also been issued to the manager of the Chhindwara gurukul in Madhya Pradesh, the hostel warden and the main caretaker of Asaram, who was present at Manai Ashram in Jodhpur on August 15, when the alleged sexual assault took place there.