Inside The Dera Campus: An Exclusive Look At Ram Rahim’s Fantasy World
A 7 star hotel and complex with Skybar, replicas of the Eiffel Tower, Taj Mahal and Disney Palace, cinema, shopping complex, food court, international school and hostel, hospital, ayurvedic pharmacy and guards to key locations – La headquarters of Dera Sacha Sauda in Haryana, on the outskirts of Sirsa, presents a surprising image of wealth and power. The entire building is decorated with tanks bearing photos of its leader Gurmeet Ram Rahim, who took the lead in 1990. The eye-catching spiritual head named “Guru in bling” because of his taste for bright costumes and state-of-the-art motorcycles – is now in jail.
Founded in 1948, Dera Sacha Sauda – described as a social and spiritual organization – claims to have 50 million disciples in India and abroad. The figures were favorable to political parties. But on Wednesday, the heart of Ram Rahim’s empire is preparing for a police raid, NDTV found during a visit. Less than two weeks ago, the sect had unleashed chaos through Haryana and Punjab when Ram Rahim was convicted of two rapes of women. The vehicles were burned, the stones thrown and the police and the media, including NDTV, directed. The violence left 30 dead and 250 people were injured.
The Haryana government has been criticized for not having anticipated the situation, although more than one lakh of Dera’s followers regularly sank in Panchkula for days before the verdict. The atmosphere on the 800-acre campus was moderate. Few people have been seen. At the hospital, where many people were admitted after the August 25 violence, most of the beds were empty. The campus is dominated by the pink mansion, dubbed the “gufa”, which means a cave where Ram Rahim lived with his family.
It is also the place where women were sexually exploited by a so-called god, one of the survivors of rape wrote in a detailed letter to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Although the gate guards were silent, residents said that Ram Rahim’s wife, two girls and one son still live here. The adopted daughter of Ram Rahim, Honeypreet Insan, one of the leaders of the Dera whom the police are looking for, is disputed. Mahi’s film, which follows Ram Rahim’s latest MSG movie, was also abandoned. The outside stalls were empty.
The international school, where residents said hundreds of students studied and embarked, is also empty. Police had asked the parents to remove their children. In the same way, the sports stadium baptized Bhartiya Khel Gaon. The Dera Sacha Sauda enjoys broad support among the Dalits and castes again and carries various social impulses, such as blood donation and afforestation. It has financed and built hospitals, shelters for girls and assisted in the rehabilitation of sex workers. In 2003, he set a Guinness World Record for the largest blood donation camp of all time.