Jan 8, 2014

Maharishi boss now prisoner No. 6364

Ankur Sirothia,TNN | Jan 2, 2014, 07.24 PM IST

BHOPAL: From mind-boggling opulence of his sprawling ashram on Bhojpur Road, Maharishi boss Girish Chandra Varma is now Prisoner No. 6364 at Bhopal Central Jail. Tossed onto a 6x3 platform in a dank, cramped barrack with 30 other undertrials, Varma could barely shield himself from the night chill with a jail blanket. With one toilet for 30 inmates, Varma suddenly found himself squeezed in stinking environs from the lap of luxury. On Wednesday, he was produced in court and sent to judicial remand.

Earlier, Varma was on a three-day police remand on charges of rape filed by a former school teacher of Maharishi Vidya Mandir School on December 29. He went on a 'maun vrat' from Tuesday midnight and remained mum in the courtroom. Early on Wednesday, another drama was witnessed at the Mahila police station after the complainant alleged police had deleted some points from the complaint and was forcing her to sign documents, but she had refused.

The woman and her husband were forced out of the Mahila Thana, but police junked her charges. Police said the complainant had refused a one-on-one with Varma and this could have helped in proving charges.

Varma spent the last day of his police remand on the first floor of the Mahila Thana. He answered police queries in writing.

His supporters assembled outside the police station and some had easy access to him. At night, he would be taken to Jehangirabad police station.

Before producing him in court, police took him for medical examination around 3.15 pm and then he was produced in court. After 45 minutes of court formalities, he was sent on a judicial remand till January 15.

His lawyers plan to move a bail application on Thursday, but experts say Varma would get relief only from high court.

Varma appeared downcast while being taken to jail around 4.30 pm. Police told the court that they had completed their investigation and did not want his remand.

Earlier, around 10 vehicles of Varma's supporters lined up adjacent to Mahila Thana from where his supporters monitored developments. An influential industrialist from Jabalpur also visited Varma in the morning. And it's being alleged that police were soft on Varma at the police station and did not put curbs on movements.

The first complaint in the case was lodged on March 24. After nine months, police registered a case against Varma on December 29 and arrested him the next day. The complainant's husband told TOI that he has full faith in the judiciary. Varma had earlier alleged that he is being framed by employees sacked by the Maharishi Vidya Mandir administration.