HC Extends Stay on Shifting Asaram's Trial to Jail Premises
JODHPUR: The Rajasthan High Court today extended till September 28 the stay on the notification for shifting the trial in the rape case against Asaram to the central jail premises here and sought the state government's response.
The hearing in the rape case will now take place in the sessions court from September 16. A bench headed by Justice Govind Mathur, while hearing a petition challenging the August 3 notification, asked the state government to file its reply in the matter on the next hearing. "The bench has also asked Asaram to appeal to his supporters not to create scenes in the court premises and on the road from jail to court campus.
"The court has directed that an appeal be published to this effect in the newspapers cautioning the supporters of Asaram against assembling in the court," said Asaram's counsel Mahesh Bora. He said that the HC has also directed the police commissioner of Jodhpur to install metal detector at the entrance of sessions court, where the trial was in progress besides directing the court to issue passes for entrants.
It may be recalled that the trial in the case against Asaram for allegedly raping a teenage girl at his ashram here was shifted to the jail premises from August 5 following a notification by the Registrar General of the high court on the direction of the Chief Justice citing threat to Asaram and ruckus created by his supporters.
The notification was challenged on the ground that the chief justice was not authorised to pass any such administrative order, which should only be taken by a larger bench in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution. Asaram, a self styled 'godman', has been in jail since August 2013 in the case.