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Crime-Justice

Lingayat mutt sex scandal: Arrest warrant against rape accused Murugha seer

IANS | November 20, 2023 03:39 PM

CHITRADURGA (KARNATAKA): Rape accused Shivamurthy Murthy Murugha Sharanaru of the historical Murugha Mutt in Chitradurga, who was recently released after 14 months in prison, faces the threat of rearrest following the court's issuance of an arrest warrant against him in the second POCSO case on Monday.

The Chitradurga Second Additional District and Sessions Court issued the order considering the submission by the public prosecutor, Jagadish.

The rape accused seer was released on November 16 following the granting of conditional bail in the first POCSO case.

The prosecution had objected to his release and demanded the issuance of an arrest warrant in the second POCSO case against him.

The counsel for the accused seer maintained that the issuance of an arrest warrant is against the bail order of the High Court.

Odanadi NGO founder M.L. Parashuram, who pursued the case against the seer, had stated that the rape-accused seer got bail due to the mistakes of the investigating officers. 3

"Had the case been probed by a high-level investigating agency, he would not have been granted bail so early. The slogans raised in favor of the accused seer have created fear among the victims, who are children, " he had said.

K.V. Stanley, co-founder of Odanadi NGO, stated they would explore legal options to get the bail cancelled.

"The minor victims are living in fear after the release of the accused seer. We are trying to instil strength and courage in them, " he had said.

The rape accused seer was arrested last year on charges of raping minor girls staying at the hostel run by the Murugha Mutt.

The influential Lingayat seer spent 14 months in the Chitradurga district prison.

On November 8, the Karnataka High Court granted a conditional bail to him. The seer is facing charges under the POCSO Act, IPC sections, Juvenile Justice Act, Religious Institutions (Prevention of Misuse) Act etc.

He was arrested after a high drama on September 1, 2022, and has been in jail since then.

The High Court Bench had restrained the accused seer from entering the premises of the mutt and also directed him to surrender his passport to the court. He was also asked to provide two sureties.

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