Odisha godman sent to three-day judicial remand

Bhubaneswar, Aug 8 (IANS) A local court in Odisha on Saturday allowed the crime branch to take controversial godman Sarathi Baba on three-day judicial remand while rejecting his bail plea.

He was arrested in the morning for his alleged involvement in a sexual escapade as well as cases related to cheating and forgery.

The sub-divisional judicial magistrate (SDJM) court, Cuttack, sent Sarathi Baba alias Santosh Raul to judicial custody.

The crime branch will take him on remand on Sunday for further interrogation.

Additional Director General (ADG) of crime branch B.K. Sharma said Sarathi has been arrested under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, Arms Act and provisions of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

“Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 420 (cheating), 468 (forgery with the purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine forged document), 341 (wrongful confinement) 506 (criminal intimidation), 379 (theft) of the IPC and SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act (offences of atrocities against the members of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes) have been slapped against the baba,” said Sharma.

During the investigation in the ashram, the crime branch had seized some arms besides bank and property documents, 15 kg silver, 54.1 grams of gold, Rs.2.28 lakh in cash and 55kg of metal coins bearing the photo of the baba.

The self-styled godman has been at the centre of a controversy after a local TV channel aired a report about his three-day stay in a Hyderabad hotel allegedly with his girlfriend in July.

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