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How will courts find out who is a fake baba, asks SC

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New Delhi, Jan 20 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Wednesday declined to entertain a plea seeking action against illegal ashrams run by fake “babas” across the country.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and comprising Justices A. S Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian said: “How will court find out who is a fake baba?”

As senior advocate Menaka Guruswamy, representing Dumpala Ramreddy, a resident of Secunderabad, said that the Akhil Bharatiya Akahara Parishad has prepared a list of fake babas in the country, the Chief Justice asked how could they rely on the Parishad’s decision on identifying fake babas.

Guruswamy replied that it is the apex body of Akaharas and traces its linage to Adi Shankara. But the bench said: “The list has been prepared without hearing them or how does this list come into force.”

She cited the conviction of godman Ram Rahim, and the Chief Justice said: “All the more reason not to go to them. Why do you want the SC to intervene?”

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta opposed the plea and cited petitioner’s habeas corpus petition in the Delhi High Court seeking custody of his daughter, allegedly been kept in illegal confinement by an alleged godman.

The bench observed that it does not want to disrespect any Akhara Parishad. “How can the Supreme Court enter into this realm. Court cannot look into it,” said the bench.

“Menaka Guruswamy, learned senior counsel appearing for the petitioner seeks permission to withdraw this petition. Permission, as sought for, is granted. Accordingly, the writ petition is dismissed as withdrawn,” the top court said in its order.

In his plea, Ramreddy said: “Though very serious criminal cases were registered against Veerendra Dev Dixit, Asaram Bapu, Ram Rahim baba, etc…, their ashrams are still run with the help of their close associates and the authorities are not verifying the facilities available over there.”

The plea urged the apex court to direct the authorities to frame guidelines in setting up of ‘Ashrams’, citing rape accused Dixit, who ran ‘Adhyatmika Vishwa Vidhyalaya’ at Rohini in Delhi, where his daughter stayed for nearly five years. Following complaints from many girls, this Ashram was raided by a court-appointed panel.




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