With Dera Sacha Sauda (DSS) chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh getting parole for the second time in the past 3 months, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Saturday accused the AAP-Government of bending over backwards to please a rape and murder convict.
“Is this how our rulers aim to apply healing touch to anguished Sikh hearts? Never seen a Govt so desperately bending over backwards to appease a rape and murder convict. Besides rubbing salt into wounds of the Sikhs, this exposes the anti-Sikh intent behind the cosmetic gestures of the Government. Akali Dal strongly condemns this,” said Badal.
Haryana Chief Minister, Manohar Lal Khattar, however, said he was not aware of the DSS chief’s parole. “Getting parole is his right, and I will not interfere in the case,” he said, adding that he was certain that all procedures were followed to grant the parole.
According to reports, Gurmeet Ram Rahim walked out of the Sunaria Jail in Rohtak (Haryana) on Saturday after he was granted 40 days parole on Friday. On Saturday evening, the Dera chief reached the Dera Sacha Sauda Ashram at Barnawa in Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh.
Rohtak’s Divisional Commissioner, Sanjeev Verma said the parole has been granted for 40 days. It has been granted in accordance with rules. The Dera chief, who is serving a 20-year jail term for raping his two disciples, had got 40-day parole in October last year which had ended on 25 November.
Prior to his October parole, he had come out of the prison on a month-long parole in June. He was also granted three weeks of furlough from February 7, 2022, barely two weeks before the Punjab Assembly elections.
The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), the apex religious body of the Sikhs, had earlier raised an objection after Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was granted a 40-day parole last year.
SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami had alleged that while special kindness was being shown to Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, Sikh prisoners lodged in jails for about three decades were not being released even after completing their sentences.
In 2021, the Dera chief, along with 4 others, were also convicted of hatching a conspiracy to kill Ranjit Singh, a Dera manager. The Dera chief and three others were convicted in 2019 for the murder of a journalist over 16 years ago.