Police in India on High Alert After Guru Jailed for 20 Years

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted of raping 2 followers
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2017 8:05 AM CDT
High-Profile Indian Guru Gets 10 Years for Rape
In this Oct. 5, 2016 photo, Indian guru Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Ji Insan, center, greets followers in New Delhi, India.   (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal, File)

The "guru of bling" is going to jail for 20 years for raping two women, and police in India are on high alert in case his followers revolt. A judge sentenced Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh to the prison term on Monday, after his conviction for raping two followers at his ashram in 2002, reports the BBC. (Singh received 10 years for each rape, and he must serve the sentences consecutively.) Singh's Dera Sacha Sauda sect claims 50 million adherents worldwide, and scores of them in India went on a deadly rampage last week in northern Haryana state after the conviction was announced. So far, however, things have remained calm after the sentencing.

That might be because police have orders to shoot protesters on sight, reports Reuters. Authorities had taken flak after last week's violence, in which nearly 40 people died, for giving the protesters free rein. The 50-year-old Singh, also nicknamed the "rockstar baba" for his flamboyant style and vast media enterprises, plans to appeal his conviction. Two years ago, Singh even put out his own movie, starring himself, in which he performs miracles, sings and dances, and roughs up gangsters. (More guru stories.)

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