Indian religious leader arrested on rape charge

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Supporters of India’s ruling Congress party hold a photograph of godman Asaram Bapu and beat it with footwear during a protest in Ahmadabad, India, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013. Supporters of Bapu, who is accused of sexually assaulting a minor, allegedly attacked a TV reporter and a cameraman at his ashram in Jodhpur as Rajasthan Police headed to Bhopal to interrogate him and make an arrest if he does not provide “concrete” defence, according to a news report. AP

JAIPUR, India— Police say they have arrested a controversial spiritual guru on a rape charge filed by a teen-age girl in northwest India.

Ajay Singh Lamba said Asaram Bapu was arrested at a spiritual retreat in central India early Sunday and flown to the city of Jodhpur where police say he is wanted for raping a 16-year-old girl.

The girl filed a complaint two weeks ago accusing the Hindu religious preacher of raping her when she visited his retreat in Jodhpur with her mother.

Asaram Bapu has denied the charge.

Asaram Bapu outraged many Indians earlier this year when he said the victim of a gang rape on a New Delhi bus would have been let off if she had addressed her attackers as brothers and pleaded with them to spare her.

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