A 63-year-old self-styled godman was detained at an ashram in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl repeatedly for two years while keeping her chained in his bedroom.
According to Ch. Vivekananda, assistant commissioner of police (ACP) of the Disha police station in Visakhapatnam, the accused has been identified as Swami Poornananda.
Poornananda manages the Swami Gnanananda Ashram and also runs an old-age home and an orphanage in the Venkojipalem neighbourhood of the city.
According to the ACP, Poornananda was detained on Monday, June 19, as a result of a complaint the minor had made in Vijayawada. The minor alleged in her complaint that the accused tortured her for the past two years, repeatedly raped her, and chained her up in a room.
Andhra Godman Arrested For Sexually Abusing And Chaining Minor Girl
Following the transfer of the case from Vijayawada to Visakhapatnam, authorities have registered a case against the self-proclaimed godman under Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), which pertains to rape, along with Section 6 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, according to the ACP. The minor is presently undergoing a medical examination at a government hospital in Vijayawada.
The police have reported that the minor, originally from Rajamahendravaram, experienced the loss of her parents during her early years. Following the completion of her fifth grade, her relatives enrolled her in the orphanage linked to Gnanananda Ashram in Visakhapatnam.
The minor alleged that Poornananda used to take her into his bedroom every night and rape her in her complaint. According to the senior officer, the girl had been chained in the bedroom for the previous year. The girl admitted to the police that she had previously only received a small amount of food and insufficient bathing water.
On June 13, with the assistance of a maid, the girl managed to flee from the ashram and board a train bound for Vijayawada.
Poornananda's recent arrest for the rape of a minor is not his first encounter with such charges, according to the police. He was detained in 2012 in connection with the rape of a 13-year-old girl, according to the ACP, who revealed that the self-styled godman is still facing trial in the case.