Sirsa, Har: A tunnel and a passageway connecting Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh’s quarters to the hostel of his female disciples were on Saturday found by the security agencies during the second day of a massive sanitisation exercise inside the headquarters of his sect.
An illegal firecracker factory and chemicals were also found during the search of the premises of the dera, whose chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was jailed for 20 years in two rape cases last month.
From the ‘gufa’ where the Dera head used to stay, a passageway was found which opens to ‘Sadhvi Niwas’, (where his female disciples were kept), according to state Information and Public Relations Department Deputy Director, Satish Mehra, who has been authorised by the administration to speak to the media.
“A fibre tunnel too has been located during the search of the dera,” he said.
The fibre tunnel is filled with mud, he said.
“The derawas is connected to Sadhvi Niwas,” he said.
“A firecracker factory has been found inside the Dera premises and it is an illegal factory,” he said, adding that the illegal factory has been sealed.
He said some chemical material to be used in making firecrackers was also found.
During the ongoing search, an empty cartridge box for AK 47 rounds was also recovered, Mehra said.
Hordes of police, paramilitary and civil administration personnel were involved in the mammoth search operation which started yesterday on the direction of Punjab and Haryana High Court.
An unregistered luxury car and some banned currency notes were yesterday seized from the dera of Singh during the sanitisation exercise, which also involved a forensic examination of his so-called cave where he allegedly used to sexually exploit women.
While some rooms were sealed, hard disk drives and unlabelled medicines were recovered during the 12-hour day long exercise.
The entire sanitisation process is being recorded and overseen by retired District and Sessions Judge, A.K.S. Pawar, who was appointed Court Commissioner by the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday.
A curfew remains in force on the road leading inside the dera headquarters and no unauthorised person is being allowed to go inside the dera premises.
A large number of vehicles including police buses and paramilitary vehicles, Quick Reaction Team vehicles, bomb disposal squad and anti-sabotage team vehicles made their way inside the dera premises this morning, officials said.
Vehicles of the district administration carrying officials drawn from various government departments also made their way inside the dera premises.
A number of dera followers who had parted ways with the sect head, reportedly told the media earlier that except for the dera chief and his close aides, nobody was allowed to enter the ‘Gufa’ or private residence.
The dera, spread over nearly 800 acres, has been divided into ten zones for the purpose of sanitisation and searches, with each zone under the control of a senior officer.
The dera chief, who featured in a few films directed and co-produced by himself, also has some shops in the complex where consumer products launched two years ago under the ‘MSG’ brand are sold.