K'taka tells SC Nityananda's potency test must

K'taka tells SC Nityananda's potency test must

'Godman' had said he is neither man nor woman in his defence

K'taka tells SC Nityananda's potency test must

The Karnataka government on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that it was necessary for self-styled godman Nityananda Swamy, accused of sexually exploiting his disciples, to undergo a medical examination to verify his claim of not having any desire as he was neither a man nor a woman.

In an affidavit, the Karnataka CID said it is up to the court to issue direction or grant permission to the police for carrying out further investigations, including medical examination, in view of Section 53A of the Criminal Procedure Code.

Forcing him to undergo a potency test would not be violative of his fundamental right as guaranteed under Article 20 (3) (no one can be compelled to stand witness against himself) of the Constitution, the police claimed. Swamy, who faces charges of rape and indulging in unnatural sex, was arrested on April 22, 2010. He was, however, granted bail on June 11, 2010. The 37-year-old has founded an ashram with its headquarters in Bangalore.

Swamy approached the Supreme Court this month after the Karnataka High Court on July 16 refused to interfere with a trial court’s direction to undergo a medical test and give a voice sample.

The apex court stayed the potency test against him and asked the Karnataka Police to file their response on his plea. Explaining the need for Swamy to undergo the medical examination, the affidavit filed through advocate Joseph Aristotle, said, “The petitioner after being enlarged on bail, spoke to the media several times, stating that he is neither a woman nor a man. He does not have any sexual desire, he is just like a child, etc. By saying so, he tried to impress that he is not capable of performing sexual activities and has no sexual potentiality.”

The police also referred to the modus operandi of the petitioner under which he allegedly entered into confidential agreements, called non-disclosure agreements (NDA), with his disciples. “It is pertinent to state that the said NDAs that were fraudulently coerced to be executed by the victims contained terms that would infer the consent of the victims to satisfy his sexual needs under the guise of tantric practices,” the investigators alleged.

Justifying the requirement of his voice sample, the police stated it was a fully innocuous exercise as comparing the specimen with a seized audio CD would help them draw a conclusion in the cases.

The police claimed to be in possession of a CD having Swamy’s conversations with complainants, in which he purportedly confessed about his illegal sexual activities and unnatural offences, and justified his acts under the guise of spiritual practices and pleaded forgiveness. The Karnataka CID also contended that the matter against the accused has been pending for more than four years due to “various delaying tactics” adopted by him.