A special CBI court in Panchkula on Thursday sentenced Dera Sacha Sauda sect chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh to life imprisonment in the murder case of journalist Ram Chander Chhatrapati.

The court also sentenced his three close aides, Krishan Lal, Kuldeep Singh, and Nirmal Singh, who were also found guilty of the murder of Chhatrapati in 2002, to life imprisonment.

The Court has also imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 each.

Ram Rahim and the three others were convicted by the CBI court on January 11. All the four were convicted under Section 302 (murder) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

The judgment came over 16 years after the murder of the journalist.

Ram Rahim is already lodged in Sunaria jail near Rohtak after his conviction on August 25, 2017, for the rape of two women disciples. He was sentenced to 20 years of rigorous imprisonment in the case.

Ram Chander Chhatrapati’s son, while reacting to the court’s ruling said, “This is the triumph of truth. I feel relieved today. the prosecution had demanded capital punishment but we’re satisfied with the punishment.”