Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim is a prisoner in Rohtak’s Sunaria jail for the three cases of period 2002-03 is serving a 20-years sentence. The first case was for the rape of his two women followers, and the second case was for the murder of a journalist Ram Chander Chhatrapati. The third case is Ranjit Singh’s murder. On Friday, October 8, 2021, he was convicted of the murder of his disciple, Ranjit Singh.
Who was Ranjit Singh, and why was he murdered?
According to the CBI charge sheet, India Times reports that Ranjit Singh, a former follower of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, was one of the managers at the Dera in Sirsa Haryana.
He was shot dead on July 10, 2002, because the Dera chief suspected him in the circulation of an anonymous letter among the Dera followers. The letter accused the chief of sexually exploiting his women followers in the Dera premises. The same letter was highlighted in Sirsa-based journalist Ram Chander Chhatrapati’s report, who was later killed for this.
An FIR was lodged based on murder and criminal conspiracy charges against the Dera chief at Thanesar police station. On November 10, 2003, the Punjab and Haryana High Court ordered a CBI investigation.
On December 3, 2003, the CBI registered an FIR against the Dera chief. In CBI’s investigation, Jasbir Singh, Sabdil Singh, Krishan Lal, Inder Sain, and the Dera chief were named as accused. All four convicts will be pronounced the sentence on October 12, 2021.
The special #CBI court in Haryana's Panchkula on Friday convicted Dera Sacha Sauda chief #Gurmeet_Ram_Rahim and four others in connection with former Dera manager Ranjit Singh's murder case. The quantum of sentence in the matter will be pronounced on October 12.— Jitender Bhardwaj (@journo_jitendra) October 8, 2021
Why did Punjab and Haryana High Court issue a stay order on verdict pronouncement?
On August 24, two days before the Special CBI Court (Panchkula) was going to pronounce the verdict in the Ranjit Singh’s murder case, Jagseer Singh, Ranjit Singh’s son, filed a petition in the Punjab and Haryana High Court to seek the transfer of the case to another CBI Judge in Punjab, Haryana, or Chandigarh.
On the same day, Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan of Punjab and Haryana High Court put a stay on pronouncement of the verdict by the Special CBI Court (Panchkula) until further orders. Earlier this month, the Punjab and Haryana high court dismissed this plea terming that the allegations are imaginary and based on surmises and conjectures.
The high court said that apprehensions should be reasonable, not imaginary. On some mere apprehensions, trials cannot be transferred, and on Friday, October 8, 2021, the court convicted Ram Rahim and four others in the Ranjit Singh murder case.