Ram Rahim – The Baba Who Raped has been edited by Aashna Kanuga.
Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh is a name that is all anyone can hear right now. Previously known just as a baba and an “actor” to most of us, we now know him as Ram Rahim, the convicted rapist. We now know him as Ram Rahim, a man worth $36 Million. We now know him as the baba who owns a fleet of cars, including customized BMW’s, Audi’s and Lamborghini’s. Ram Rahim was accused of rape in 2002 when a Dera Sadhvi wrote an anonymous letter to then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee stating that she was raped by the Dera chief. What’s more, it has now become an open fact that baba ji performed surgeries and castrated men in the name of “religion”.
Ram Rahim’s conviction has wreaked havoc. His supporters have revolted. 38 people have died in Panchkula. 768 arrests have been made for charges of violence, stone pelting against security forces and much more. What has motivated his followers to pick up makeshift weapons? Why are supporters burning cars, damaging buses in Delhi and burning down train bogeys? These acts can be attributed to two reasons. First, the enigma that is Ram Rahim. Second and most important, common man’s best friend—blind faith.
The Dera Sacha Sauda ashram has two worlds. There is one which is open for everyone to see. It organizes welfare programs, has a dharamshala, and a hospital, images of which are shown to you and me—the common people. According to media persons who have been into the ashram, when Gurmeet Ram Rahim isn’t meeting people, he is in a cavernous room somewhere inside. The room is shaped like a cave, but it has all the amenities available outside, and more. What are these amenities? Sex with shishyas—without their consent, of course—drugs, alcohol and castration in the name of God.
According to an excerpt of a TV reporter, this is what she found when she was allowed into “Baba ki gufa“:
“There were shining curtains and sprawling sofas. His gufa had 209 women devotees called shishyas. They are selected with special standards in mind. These girls were dressed in white like sadhvis, their hair let loose.
These shishyas are supposed to take care of Baba – feed him, escort him and so on.’
Ram Rahim has earned his wealth by duping thousands into donating in the name of God. People buy “ayurvedic and herbal” remedies for terminal diseases. His movies are the rage in Haryana and Punjab. His sermons and his concerts—yes, concerts—are attended by thousands. The man is provided with Z+ security and his guards are all armed to the teeth with sophisticated weapons. His “personal security” at the Dera is an all women force. Of international origin, who are also his shishyas.
But isn’t all this partly our fault?
There comes a time in people’s lives when they are down and out. At that point in time, they try and go in for all sorts of remedies. The poor, uneducated Indian family relies a little too much on God and his miracles. Because to them, God is the answer. Add to it the “Messenger of God”, a.k.a Ram Rahim, and people see the solution to their woes. Baba ji will help them out. Baba ji will cure cancer. He will make their barren fields fertile again. To them, he is God.
We normally blame lack of education for superstitions. Be that as it may, in India, even educated individuals have their own superstitions and beliefs. Everybody has at least one superstition that they follow, whether they admit it or not. Whether it’s related to a certain religion, or a legend passed down from their ancestors. It is our human instinct to concoct a thought in, however dark or crazy it might be. If you have to “donate” gold, you have to donate gold. All in the name of a God or one of his disciples.
Blind faith can drive you to be a suicide bomber. I believe that all superstitions are harmful since they inactivate the reasoning capacity of humans. They make people waste their energy, time and money in worthless rituals and ceremonies. Superstition is like an eclipse which casts its shadows forever and engulfs the whole society. The outer cover of superstition is so hard that it won’t allow the beam of knowledge to penetrate through the conscious mind.
You can act against crime, misrepresentation and fraud. But would you be able to prohibit blind faith, regardless of the possibility that highlighted by superstitions, on the off chance that it didn’t hurt anyone? The line differentiating faith and blind faith is very thin, and it is the latter that law must fight against. Blind faith can only be overcome by experience and education. There are no two ways about it. It is high time we stop falling prey to the Asaram Bapus and Ram Rahims of this world.
As for Ram Rahim, he deserves the punishment. Every minute of it. It is time to look at these faux messengers and divine spirits for what they really are. They don’t practice what they preach. What they preach is essentially crap. All they know is to put on a good show and feeding on the poor family that didn’t know what else to do.
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