Home / State / Students of Murugha Math in Karnataka shifted to govt hostel, pontiff booked under SC/ST Act

Students of Murugha Math in Karnataka shifted to govt hostel, pontiff booked under SC/ST Act

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Chitradurga, Aug 31: The students of Murugha Math were shifted to the government hostel here after a case under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act was registered against the chief pontiff Shivamurthy Murugha Sharanaru for the alleged sexual abuse of high school girls.

Many parents too took their children home after the controversy broke out and the seer was booked.

The pontiff was also charged under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act on Tuesday as one of the survivors is a Dalit girl, sources in police department said.

The case under the SC/ST Act was registered after Dalit organisations staged a protest on Tuesday, demanding the immediate arrest of Sharanaru, they said.

It is learnt that the police team is frequently visiting the Math and the hostel ever since the case came to light.

Sharanaru has claimed that the allegations were part of a long-drawn conspiracy against him, indicated an inside job, and vowed to come out clean in the case.

The chief pontiff of one of the Lingayat seminaries in the state, the seer also said he was law-abiding and would cooperate with the investigation.

The Mysuru city police on Saturday filed an FIR against the seer under the Protection of Children From Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and certain sections of the Indian Penal Code for the alleged sexual abuse.

The FIR was registered against a total of five people, including the warden of the monastery’s hostel, based on the complaint by an officer of the District Child Protection Unit.

Two girls had approached a non-governmental organisation in Mysuru and narrated the alleged abuse following which it contacted the authorities and the case was registered by the police. It was subsequently shifted to Chitradurga, the place where the alleged crime took place.

(Source: Vartha Bharati)

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