Haryana minister Anil Vij has strongly defended Manohar Lal Khattar government batting for parole for rape convict Dera Sacha Sauda Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim. He has defended the Dera Sacha Sauda leader's right to parole.
Ram Rahim has been sentenced for 20 years for raping two women in August 2017. He had sought parole for over a month for farming in his fields in Haryana's Sirsa. Citing his 'good behaviour' in the prison where he spent one year of his sentence, the Jail Superintendent has written a letter seeking parole for Ram Rahim to Sirsa district administration. .
"The court has accepted that he is a rapist and so do we, we are not reducing his sentence.
"Every person has the right to ask for parole. Just as a common person gets parole he will also get the parole as per the laws, we are not making special exception for him. You tell me on what basis he cannot get parole? It is his right to get parole please don't relate this with the Haryana assembly elections, it has nothing to do with the polls. If it had anything to do with the polls, we would have granted him parole before the Lok Sabha elections.
"You ensure the right for parole is removed from the law if you oppose it.
Manohar Lal Khattar's government runs as per the law. Do his rights as a common citizen no longer hold? Rapists also get parole. I am not defending him, the law has declared him as a rapist so everyone must too. He has the right to parole," he said.
The 51-year-old Dera Sacha Sauda chief is currently lodged at Sunaria jail in Rohtak after being convicted in two rape cases and murder of a journalist.
Following his application for the parole for 42 days, the jail superintendent has written to the Sirsa district administration. In a letter dated June 18, the official sought a report on whether releasing Gurmeet Ram Rahim on parole would be feasible or not.
A special CBI court in Panchkula had in January this year also sentenced him and three others to life imprisonment for the murder of a journalist over 16 years ago.