Indian Guru of Bling rape conviction and the mayhem that followed

File photo of Gurmeet Ram Rahim SIngh

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh also known as “the guru of bling” has been convicted of raping two of his female followers and a murder in the northern state of Haryana, India. The case had first put up in 2007 following a letter about the details of rape mailed to the former Indian prime minister.

The self-styled religious leader who heads the Dera Sacha Suda or Place of Truth ashram in Sirsa, will be sentenced on Monday according to the judge from the special Central Bureau of Investigation.

After the conviction, a mod of around 20,000 supporters of Singh forced a lock down in the northern state and started a bloody riot following a clash with the police of Panchkula.

The mob attacked everyone including news personnel. Reporters from NDTV were hiding in a house nearby as the mob was attacking anyone and everyone in their way. Local news reported 14 people dead and 80 injured due to the unrest.

After the news of conviction was made public, his supporters in the northern state resorted to violence and started burning cars and buses and destroying buildings. Television vans were attacked.

Due to severity of the condition, army was called in to handle the situation. Hospitals struggled to handle the number of injured.

However, Singh asked his followers through a video message to stay calm and go back to their homes. He requested his followers to maintain peace and stop the violent rampage and respect the judicial orders.

Singh is known for his flashy dress ups and his fondness for diamonds. He is the spiritual leader of the controversial spiritual sect founded in 1948 called, Dera sacha Sauda.

The group describes itself as a “selfless socio-spiritual organization” and has millions of followers worldwide and is spread out across 10 states and union territories in India.

He has starred in several movies and music videos and is known as a cult icon and performer.

Singh is known for surrounding himself with 400 castrated body guards no different than medieval eunuchs. He termed the castration as a process to get “closer to god”. Singh has also starred in his self-made movie called “The Messenger of God”.

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