Finally, Asaram deposes before probe commission


kids' death Claims incident a conspiracy by 'foreign powers' to malign him, his ashram

Spiritual leader Asaram Bapu deposed before the D K Trivedi Commission on Saturday in connection with the mysterious deaths of two minor students of the gurukul run by his ashram in 2008 and alleged that "foreign powers" were behind the alleged adverse publicity campaign against him and his ashram. He has also alleged that even the deaths were part of a conspiracy to malign him, his ashram and the Hindu religion.

The deposition lasted for nearly eight hours. Earlier today, Asaram came along with his followers at the Commission in Judges' Bungalow area. Even before his arrival, hundreds of his followers had gathered outside the Commission office. A tight security arrangement was made to prevent any untoward incident.

Asaram told the Commission that on July 3, 2008, he was in Nagpur and he came to know about the deaths of the two children the next day. He said the news jolted him and he had asked his followers to do religious recitations. In an emotional tone, he said, "For the parents of the two, they were their physical parents. But for me, they were my manas putra."

He said the entire episode was part of a conspiracy under which one person sneaked into the gurukul a few days before the incident and disappeared after the incident.

Pointing to the foreign hand in the conspiracy, Asaram said, "The manner in which media joined the episode, it became clear (to him) that foreign powers were behind it."

Initially, he said that he did not want to name the conspirators but later he named one Gosai as the person who was part of the conspiracy. He did not elaborate on the conspiracy when asked by the lawyer of the parents of the deceased children.

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