Narayan Sai: India guru Asaram Bapu's son arrested over 'sex assault'

  • 4 December 2013
  • From the section India
Asaram Bapu's son Narayan Sai, centre in red cap, attends a rally in support of his father in Delhi, on Tuesday, Sept 3, 2013
Image caption Police said they had been looking for Narayan Sai for the past few months

The son of controversial Indian spiritual guru Asaram Bapu has been arrested in connection with a case of alleged sexual assault.

Narayan Sai was arrested along with one of his aides, the Press Trust of India quoted a police official as saying.

The police had been looking for him for several months after two sisters in Gujarat state filed a case accusing him and his father of rape. Both the father and the son have denied the charge.

Asaram Bapu was arrested in September.

Narayan Sai was arrested near Delhi, the Press Trust of India quoted Ravindra Yadav, Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime), as saying on Wednesday.

Police sources said he had disguised himself as a Sikh man to evade arrest, the agency added.

Police in Surat district in Gujarat say the father and the son are accused of "rape, sexual assault, illegal confinement and other charges". Both deny the charges.

Asaram, the 72-year-old guru whose main ashram (religious centre) is in Gujarat's largest city Ahmedabad, has millions of followers in India and his discourses on Hindu religion and religious practices are hugely popular.

His arrest sparked protests by his supporters in several cities, who said the charges were politically motivated.

But protests were also held against Asaram, with many demanding that he should be treated in the same way as other rape suspects.

Earlier this year, he caused outrage by saying that the victim of last year's fatal Delhi gang rape would have been set free had she called her attackers brothers and pleaded for mercy.

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