Bhubaneswar: The Enforcement Directorate(ED) conducted raid on the self-styled godman, Sarathi Baba alias, Santosh Raul’s ashram at Kendrapara on Friday. Meanwhile, he also appeared before SDJM on Saturday in connection with the controversy of exploiting a female follower.
The ED team led by Joint Director Shivaji Rout reached his ashram during the afternoon hours and interrogated his mother and other residents of the ashram. Earlier, ED had already questioned the chief of Sarathi Samiti Rabindra Pattnaik, aides Sushant Malik, Dharanidhar Mallik, Bijay Kumar Sahu, Khagendra Rout, his brother Debendra Raul, his son Satyam Raul, in connection with the financial and land related transactions of the Sarathi Trust.
Earlier on August 8 2015, the self proclaimed godman was arrested by the Crime Branch under Sections 120-B, 420, 467, 341, 379 and 506 of IPC along with Section 3 of the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, Section 25 of Arms Act and Section 7 of the Religious Institutions (Prevention of Misuse) Act. Since then, it is now around 16 months that Sarathi is at the jail without a single trial and with his numerous bail pleas rejected by High Court.