New Delhi: Dera Saccha Sauda Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh who has been convicted of rape will spend his time in jail growing vegetables and pruning trees.
For someone who built a sprawling empire in Sirsa, the self-styled godman will do these jobs for eight hours daily and will be paid Rs 20 per day.
The Dera chief, who is lodged in Rohtak’s Sunaria jail, is stamped as prison number 1997. Adjoining his barrack, there is a small plot of land where he will grow vegetables, K P Singh, DGP (jails), Haryana, told reporters on Tuesday in Panchkula.
“In jail, he will also prune trees adjoining his barrack. He will get Rs 20 per day for farming work, which falls under the unskilled work category,” he added. Whatever is produced will be used in the jail mess.
DGP also dismissed reports that Ram Rahim was being extended any special treatment. “It is (a) baseless and imaginary (report). He is living in jail like any other ordinary inmate and he is living like a disciplined inmate. He is being provided the same food as given to other prisoners,” he said, adding that there is no TV set in his cell.
He also refuted reports that Ram Rahim had any special request to talk to his adopted daughter Honeypreet. The DGP said that the Dera Chief has provided two telephone numbers to prison authorities– one of which is of Honeypreet and the other is his own number that is left behind in Sirsa.
The verification of the two numbers has still not been conducted, he said. Ram Rahim has also given 10 names who could meet him in the prison. “We have sent these names to the Sirsa Police and so far we have got verification of his mother who has already met him,” the officer said.
Singh also said that Honeypreet, who had accompanied Ram Rahim in a helicopter after his conviction on August 25, was not allowed inside the jail. She was asked to sit outside the rest house of the prison and the police were intimated.
The officer also said that Ram Rahim is not allowed to have any contact with other prisoners. He said that for security considerations, Ram Rahim has been lodged in a barrack with only a few prisoners who have a track record of “good conduct”. However, access to his barrack is controlled and jail staff with the impeccable record have been put on duty near him.
The DGP (jails) also added that prison authorities have taken inputs from various agencies about threat perception to Ram Rahim. The police had also conducted a mock drill and alerted PGIMS Rohtak in preparation for dealing with any medical emergency which would involve Ram Rahim being taken out of the prison.
“They just conducted a mock drill, but a section of media associated that to his health. He (Gurmeet) is healthy and doing fine,” Singh said.