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Asaram to face arrest if he fails to turn up for questioning

Jodhpur, Aug 29, 2013, (PTI): 10:38 IST
 Self-styled godman Asaram Bapu interacts with media at his ashram in Indore on Tuesday. PTI Photo
Controversial self-styled godman Asaram Bapu, who is accused of sexually assaulting a minor, will face arrest if he fails to appear before the Jodhpur Police tomorrow, a top police officer has said.

"We will wait until August 30 as per the deadline of the summons served on him and if he fails to turn up by August 30, we will send a team to arrest him on August 31," Jodhpur Police Commissioner Biju George Joseph told reporters here late last night.

72-year-old Asaram had sought extension in the date of appearance before the investigation officer of the case at Jodpur citing he had various pre-decided religious fixtures lined up till September 19.

Yesterday, DCP Ajay Pal Lamba had said that police will wait till August 30 and if the self-styled godman fails to appear before them for questioning, further course of action would be decided on that day.

Meanwhile, three other accused, including Shilpi (the warden of the hostel at Gurukul), Keshav (attendant of Gurukul) and Shiva (caretaker of Asaram, who was with him at Manai ashram on the day of incident) will appear before the investigating today for interrogation.

According to the DCP, Shilpi and Keshav had sent the 16-year-old girl to Jodhpur for a ritual to ward off evil spirits for which Asaram had wanted to be alone in the room with the minor on the night of August 15, and Shiva had threatened the girl against disclosing the incident to anyone.

Asaram's son Narayan Sai, in comments which could stroke a controversy, had claimed that the minor girl who levelled the allegations is "mentally unstable".

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