Haryana Chief Minister Khattar supports parole for rape convict Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. He said parole is Ram Rahim’s right. It was only a month ago that the Punjab and Haryana High Court has rejected the parole application of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. But now the Haryana government is prepping up to allow Ram Rahim to go on parole to attend his foster daughter’s wedding.
The Haryana government is backing its actions citing every convict has a right to parole. However, court had observed that releasing him could lead to a larger law and order problem. In 2017, when the self-proclaimed godman Ram Rahim was arrested, enormous violence took place in Panchkula by his followers.
Dera Sacha Sauda Chief Ram Rahim Singh was convicted in two separate cases of raping minors and is currently serving a 20 year rigorous imprisonment.
Haryana Minister KL Panwar said “Every convict has the right to seek parole after a year. He made a request which we forwarded to the Sirsa district administration. Further action will be taken based on the report. Do not link this with elections. If we had such an intention we would have released him before Lok Sabha elections. The government has no such intention.”
Two other ministers are also supporting the government citing Ram Rahim was at his good behavior during his jail term and so he can avail parole like other prisoners.
Rejecting his plea for parole in May this year, Justice Kuldeep Singh of Punjab and Haryana High Court said “I am of the view after considering serious allegations against Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, that the law and order problem which is likely to be created in case he is released on parole and difficulty of the state in re-arresting him, there is no ground to grant him parole.”
In 2017, Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh’s followers have created a huge law and order problem by blocking roads, damaging government’s properties including clashes with police. The violence caused death of over 30 people.
However, the government’s actions are largely seen in the backdrop of elections. Haryana is headed for assembly elections in four months. The supporters of Ram Rahim form a huge voter base spread across the state of Haryana. It is said that the ruling BJP government has come to power because of his support in the last elections.