Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh is an Indian guru, music producer, singer-songwriter, actor, and filmmaker and now a convicted rapist is the title that has been added to this list! He has been the head of the social group Dera Sacha Sauda (DSS) since 23 September 1990 and has been featured 96th in the 100 most powerful Indians list of The Indian Express in 2015. Her has been in the news recently due to his conviction in a rape case. The judge who sentenced him to 20 years in prison for rape called him a “wild beast” who deserved no leniency. The self-styled holy man was found guilty of sexually assaulting two female followers from 1999 to 2002. Now, sent to prison for 20 years, his fall from grace is complete and lurid details of his life are emerging in the media.
Yogalife founder, Kish Pagarani expresses concern about such incidents and said that such gurus count celebrities, politicians, film and cricket personalities, and scores of ordinary people among their followers and run charitable institutions touting influence and gaining power. He added that a lot of people from the Middle East, including students go to India to learn under these Gurus and they should be alert and careful when they do so. In the past also these gurus – or “godmen” as they are called in India – have been accused of murder, rape, trafficking, assault, sexual abuse, and fraud. In a vast country like India, many people flock to these so-called gurus due to their fears and insecurities in an increasingly discriminatory world, and seek relief at their feet giving them invincible power.