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After ‘Guru Of Bling’ Sentencing, Indian State Stays On Alert For Violence

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was condemned to 20 years in jail on Monday.

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The India Today Group/India Today Group/Getty Images

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was condemned to 20 years in jail on Monday.

The India Today Group/India Today Group/Getty Images

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh wept and begged redemption as a decider review out a visualisation opposite him on Monday: 20 years for raping dual immature disciples in 2002 during his devalue in a northern Indian state of Haryana. The self-proclaimed Sikh guru perceived 10 years for any offense, to be served consecutively.

The burly, bearded 50-year-old wailed that he was trusting and had to be carried out by marshals, according to reporters during a jail hearing.

'Guru Of Bling' Rape Conviction Sparks Deadly Protests In India

The box of Singh, also famous as a “Guru of Bling,” has unprotected a decrepit underbelly of one of India’s high-profile, contentious devout leaders.

Singh stood out: a decorated persona with a gusto for souped-up motorcycles and an magnificent conform sense. He scripted and starred in his possess movie, a 2014 film MSG (for “Maharaj Saint Gurmeet,” one of his monikers) in that he expel himself as a drastic follower of God – a summary former members of his sect, famous as Dera Sacha Sauda, contend was drilled into them.

On his website, he is extolled as “Spiritual Saint,” “Musician,” “Director,” “Superb Medic,” “Sportsman,” “Feminist,” “Emperor of Melodies” and “Social Reformer” — among other things.

But on Monday, he was only a prisoner. A library inside a jail in Rohtak, a city 50 miles north of New Delhi where Singh had been hold given his conviction, was fast converted into a courtroom. So endangered were authorities over a repeat of a assault unleashed after his self-assurance that Judge Jagdeep Singh was helicoptered in to review out his judgment.

Singh scripted and starred in a 2014 film MSG, in that he expel himself as a drastic follower of God.

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Security was a sequence of a day via a whole state. Thousands of infantry were deployed in Haryana to keep a assent that was cracked on Friday.

On Monday, a tiny procession of army vehicles changed by Panchkula’s streets in a uncover of force meant to daunt Singh’s supporters from entertainment some-more violence. After his self-assurance on Friday, they vandalized sight stations, burnt cars and motorbikes and shop-worn supervision buildings. More than 30 people died in a violence.

“We’re here since a military couldn’t control a situation,” pronounced an army officer who asked not to be identified.

Many of those who had run amok came from elsewhere. Panchkula’s emissary commissioner of police, Manbir Singh, told NPR that some 900 people had been incarcerated and were being hold in jails in other cities.

The High Court in Chandigarh, a state capital, savaged a state’s confidence officials for a vast detriment of life and repairs to property. The justice systematic a supervision to yield a list of Dera Sacha Sauda skill land with an eye toward seizing them.

Indian policemen travel in front of a store belonging to Dera Sacha Sauda group arch Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh after it was hermetic by authorities, nearby Sonipat, India on Saturday. Security army patrolled a streets of a north Indian state, where mobs went on a uproar after a justice announced Singh guilty of raping dual of his followers.

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Indian policemen travel in front of a store belonging to Dera Sacha Sauda group arch Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh after it was hermetic by authorities, nearby Sonipat, India on Saturday. Security army patrolled a streets of a north Indian state, where mobs went on a uproar after a justice announced Singh guilty of raping dual of his followers.

Altaf Qadri/AP

Singh’s devalue was also ringed by a army on Monday. Some devotees willingly evacuated while others continued to challenge a ask that they empty a premises.

Many of Singh’s supporters are Sikh Dalits, who lay during a bottom of a amicable hierarchy. They incited to his group for basis like food, medicine and a clarity of equality, and their guru’s self-assurance was an unthinkable tumble from grace.

His invulnerability warn done a defence for leniency, portraying Rahim as amicable worker, citing his munificent work on interest of vacant women and recuperating alcoholics.

Supporters of a Dera Sacha Sauda group wait nearby an Indian justice in Panchkula final Thursday, a day before their devout personality Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted of rape. Many of Singh’s supporters are low-caste or Dalits, formerly famous as “untouchables,” who incited to his ashram for basis such as food and medicine.

Altaf Qadri/AP


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Altaf Qadri/AP

Supporters of a Dera Sacha Sauda group wait nearby an Indian justice in Panchkula final Thursday, a day before their devout personality Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted of rape. Many of Singh’s supporters are low-caste or Dalits, formerly famous as “untouchables,” who incited to his ashram for basis such as food and medicine.

Altaf Qadri/AP

One of a manners of a Dera Sacha Sauda is to reject any critique of Singh. Supporters were discerning to call a allegations opposite him baseless, trumped adult by those who feared a guru’s popularity.

Although he boasts of carrying millions of followers, there is no lawful number. Politicians believed he could broach his supporters to a polls, and both India’s Congress Party and statute BJP had aligned with Singh. Critics says his domestic connectors lent to his aura and heightened his clarity of impunity.

Singh recently corroborated Narendra Modi’s BJP and enjoyed a philanthropy of a BJP Haryana state preparation apportion — who presented Singh with a large concession only days before his rape conviction, and insisted his violent supporters were “peaceful.”

The concession coincided with a guru’s birthday — noted by a cake that his website claims hold 150,000 birthday candles and breaks a universe record for many candles.

Singh is now detained on a non-bailable offense. His lawyers contend they will interest a visualisation and a rape convictions.

But his authorised play will not finish there. Next, he’ll face charges of murder in tie with a genocide of a reporter, Ram Chander Chhatrapati. The publisher was killed in 2002 — after exposing a cases of rape for that Singh was convicted final week.