The Punjab and Haryana high court has sought details of damages reported on August 25, 2017, the day Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim was convicted in two rape cases by a court in Panchkula
The Punjab and Haryana high court has sought details of damages reported on August 25, 2017, the day Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim was convicted in two rape cases by a court in Panchkula.
The details were sought during resumed hearing of a plea by the bench of justice AG Masih and two other judges, justice Ritu Bahri and justice TS Dhindsa. The proceedings in this case could not be effectively conducted since March 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
As the hearing began, the bench was apprised about the case by senior advocate and amicus curaie in the case, Anupam Gupta since judges on the bench were new to the case.
Later, the court asked for details of damages reported in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh on August 25 and subsequent days and sought suggestions on constitution of claims tribunal so that affected persons could be compensated.
The issue of whether the Dera head is to be made to pay or if it is to be paid by the respective administrations has been left for the consideration of the high court.
On August 25, 2017, the Dera head was convicted in two rape cases of his disciples in 2002 at Sirsa-based Dera headquarters. The conviction had led to widespread violence in Panchkula and parts of Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh in which at least 38 deaths, including deaths of 30 persons in Panchkula, were reported, besides, widespread damage to government as well as private properties.
Later, the Dera head had to be handed down the sentencing order through video hearing.
He is lodged in Sunaria jail since then. He was awarded 20-year jail term for the rape cases. Subsequently, he was also convicted in two murder cases of journalist Ram Chander Chhatrapati and former dera manager Ranjit Singh, both reported in 2002.