The Assistant Superintendent of Police, Satna Gautam Solanki informed the media on Thursday, December 12 that a Bhopal-based religious preacher has been booked under the (POCSO) Act 2012 and the SC/ST (Atrocities Protection Act). The preacher is accused of sexually assaulting three minor girls at his ashram.
While speaking to media personnel in Satna, Madhya Pradesh the official said:
"The religious preacher has been arrested by us. He has been booked under provisions of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act 2012 and the SC/ST (Atrocities Protection Act). He had tried to sexually assault three young girls."
Narayan Swarup Tripathi, the accused preacher, was arrested in Maihar Dehat (Nadan) police station area.
The complainant narrated the incident and said that the incident happened on December 7 when the parents of the minor girls requested the accused to perform rituals for Kal Sarp Dosh in girls' horoscopes.
The accused planned the assault. He called the girls one after the other in a room on the pretext of performing a ritual and allegedly sexually assaulted them.
The police have stated that the matter shall be investigated further. In a separate case on the same day, Tamil Nadu booked the first child pornography case under POCSO in Tiruchi
In a similar incident involving godmen and alleged abuse of minors, Swami Nityananda stands accused of rape and illegal confinement of children aged 9 to 10 years old at his ashram in Karnataka, in addition to other criminal charges against him.
According to news reports, in September 2019, a total of 1,66,882 cases of rape and those under the POCSO Act are pending trial in various courts across the country.
Read | The POCSO Act 2012
(With Inputs from ANI)