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Delhi HC Dismisses Daati Maharaj’s Review Petition, Rape Charges to Be Investigated by CBI

A bench of Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Rajendra Menon and Justice Kameshwar Rao transferred the case looking into the improper and biased investigation by the authorities. Also, the court had said that the trial court in the meanwhile can go on with the case.

Debayan Roy | News18.com

Updated:November 14, 2018, 10:34 PM IST
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New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed the review petition filed by self-styled godman Dati Maharaj against the court’s decision to transfer probe into the rape case against him to the CBI.

He has been charged with rape in two states, Delhi and Rajasthan.

A bench of Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Rajendra Menon and Justice Kameshwar Rao transferred the case looking into the improper and biased investigation by the authorities. Also, the court had said that the trial court in the meanwhile can go on with the case.

The issue pertains to a 25-year-old woman who lived as a disciple in his ashram. She had lodged the complaint that Daati Maharaj raped her at his ashrams in Delhi and as well as in Rajasthan.

The survivor approached the Delhi HC seeking probe by the CBI and also pleaded for the arrest of the accused by the investigation agency.

Earlier when the matter was to be listed, a bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice A J Bhambhani had opined that the review petition must be heard by the same bench who had passed the earlier orders and accordingly listed the matter before the Bench of the Chief Justice and Justice V K Rao on November 2.

Dati Maharaj moved HC against court's order of October 3 in which it transferred the probe regarding sexual assault of a disciple inside Shani Dham two years ago, from Delhi Police Crime Branch to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

In his plea, it was alleged that the victim had concealed certain information in the matter. Senior advocate N Hariharan, appearing on behalf of Daati, informed the court that earlier his petition was filed before the Supreme Court which directed him to approach the HC for redressal of his grievance.

On October 1, the Crime Branch had filed a chargesheet in the case whereas the victim had registered the First Information Report(FIR) in June at the Fatehpur Beri police station against Maharaj, and others including a woman. Daati Maharaj was then booked under Sections 376, 377, 354 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

The case was transferred to CBI, citing the delay by the state police in the issue, which even after registering the FIR and recording of the complainant's statement before a magistrate under Section 164 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) did not put any efforts to arrest the accused, for which it also faced the rap of the High Court. However, the police questioned Dati Maharaj in the issue.



The petitioner in this review petition had contended that a second FIR has been registered in the case and that the primary source of investigation were newspaper reports.​
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