India detains hundreds in ‘godman’ protests

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PV International Desk : Indian authorities have arrested hundreds of people and cancelled more than 300 trains passing through two northern states after at least 29 people were killed in violent protests following the conviction of a self-styled ‘godman’.
Security forces were on “standby” outside the spiritual leader’s headquarters where some 10,000 followers remained holed up, the Director General of Police in Haryana state, Baljit Singh Sandhu, told India Today news station.
Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, the head of a social welfare and spiritual group with a wide following in Punjab and Haryana states, was found guilty on Friday of raping two followers in a case dating back to 2002 at the headquarters of his Dera Sacha Sauda group in the northern town of Sirsa.
Supporters rampaged in response, attacking railway stations, petrol stations and television vans in towns across the northern states of Punjab and Haryana, witnesses said.