hisar barwala
Police surrounding Sant Rampal's Satlok Ashram in Hisar's Barwala town.IANS

LIVE: Punjab & Haryana HC Cancels Self-Styled 'Godman' Rampal's Bail; Hearing on Thursday 

10:30pm Rampal being taken for a medical check-up.

10:25pm Followers throw acid pouches at the police.

10:20pm Rampal to be produced in Hisar court tomorrow.

10:10pm 4000 followers still at the ashram.

10pm Godman Rampal arrested from Satlok Ashram just after 9 PM.

5:20pm: At least 425 more have been arrested from Rampal's Satlok Ashram. The effort to arrest the self-styled godman is till on and centre has send more troops to carry on the operation.

4:02pm: As Sant Rampal continues to evade arrest, police have slapped more charges against the self-styled godman. He has been charged with rioting, sedition and treason.

A Case against Rampal, some of his supporters and officials of Satlok Ashram has been filed under Sections 121 (waging, or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the Government of India), 121A (conspiring to commit certain offences against the state).

Also under Sections 122 (Collecting arms etc. with the intention of waging war against the Government of India), 123 (concealing with intent to facilitate design to wage war) and other charges that include attempt to murder, assault and under various Sections of the Arms Act, DGP Vashisht said.

3:25pm: Police arrested Rampal's brother, Purshottam Das, from Satlok ashram. He was arrested while he was reportedly trying to flee from the ashram.

1:03pm: Rampal's supporters, who were evacuated from the ashram, have denied allegations that they were forcibly held inside. They were also seen crying for failing to meet their "guruji," who they said has left the ashram.

12:55pm: During a press conferrence, Haryana DGP Vashisht briefed on recent developments in Hisar clash. He told media that the self-styled godman is still inside the ashram and the police has asked him to surrender.

12:30pm: At least 10,000 followers have been evacuated so far and the police are trying to evacuate the remaining 5,000 safely, Vashisht said.

12:25pm: Dead bodies of four women have been recovered from Rampal's ashram on Wednesday morning. Their bodies have been sent to hospital for postmortem. The DGP said the cause of the deaths will be determined once the report comes.

After a day of tussle with Rampal's supporters, who are guarding his ashram in Barwala town, the Hisar police has resumed their operation on Wednesday to arrest him in connection with a 2006 murder case.

The security outside the ashram has been tightened and mediapersons have been barred from the clash site, according to reports.

"There is a ban on media as of now, lets see how they proceed: Journalist on Sant," ANI tweeted.

"Media supported police & nw [sic] rules are being imposed again, wonder what they are trying to hide: Prashant Gupta, journalist on Sant," the news agency tweeted in another post.

At least 10,000 followers trapped inside the ashram have started leaving the premises and the police is reportedly providing them with transport facilities to reach the bus stands in Barwala, Hisar and Hansi.

"We have provided transportation to such people to help them reach bus stands and railway station in Barwala, Hisar and Hansi," a district official told IANS.

During the efforts to arrest the godman on Tuesday, a violent clash broke out between the police and Rampal's supporters, of whom several got injured. In the clash, at least 105 policemen suffered injuries while a few journalists were also attacked.

Haryana DGP SN Vashisht told the media that several armed supporters are guarding the ashram from inside and they are using petrol bombs and acid pouches for attacking the police, while several supporters have been held inside forcibly. At least 2,000 followers are still inside the premises, according to Hindustan Times.

Several of his disciples, who were allegedly forced to stay at the ashram to form a human shield to protect him from being arrested, are fleeing from the site.

After the situation turned intense on Tuesday, the state government and the Union Home Ministry asked the followers to maintain law and order and demanded a report on the incident.

The 63-year-old godman is facing charges for inciting mobs and contempt of court apart from a murder charge in 2006, in which his followers opened fire at the villagers in Rohtak and killed one.

He was supposed to appear before Punjab and Haryana High Court on Monday after it issued a non-bailable warrant against him. However, he did not appear for the hearing, citing medical issues. 

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