New Delhi: Self-styled godman Daati Maharaj has been given a notice by the Delhi Police asking him to join a probe in the rape case registered against him by a former disciple, police said on Monday. The notice asks him to come for questioning on Wednesday, police said.
Daati Maharaj, who is the founder of the Delhi based Shree Shanidham Trust, has been accused of allegedly raping one of his disciples in his ashrams in Rajasthan and South Delhi's Mehrauli two years ago. Two of his male disciples have also been named in the woman's complaint.
On Saturday, a Delhi Police team visited the self-styled godman's ashram in Pali, Rajasthan to gather evidence. But the team, accompanied by the 25-year-old woman who filed the complaint, could not find Daati Maharaj at the ashram. The police also visited his ashram in Delhi's Chhatarpur on Friday.
The woman had filed the complaint against Daati Maharaj last Sunday at the Fatehpur Beri police station in south Delhi. The case was transferred to the Crime Branch. The woman has told the police that she had been a disciple of Daati Maharaj for a decade but after she was raped by him, she returned to her home in Rajasthan.
A lookout notice was issued against the self-styled godman on Thursday to ensure he doesn't leave the country.
Daati Maharaj had told reporters on Thursday that the woman was "like my daughter" and claimed that he would cooperate in the investigation. "I won't blame that girl because she was my daughter and will continue to be that. Even if I am hanged, I won't accuse her. If I have done anything wrong, then the legal authorities will look into that," he had said.
The Delhi Commission for Women wrote to the Deputy Commissioner of Police asking why there was a delay in arresting Daati Maharaj. "It has come to the knowledge of the Commission through media reports that the accused Daati Maharaj has not been arrested till now and he is giving interviews to the media from his ashram. This is a very serious matter," the letter stated.
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With inputs from PTI