Indians can be superstitious, and how! The godmen and godwomen¬†have a massive following in India for some strange reason. People blindly seek their blessings and pay exorbitant amounts as donations because apparently, we are all in misery and these godmen with “superpowers” can put an end to our problems. However, these gurus are not new to controversies and scandals. From sex scandals to murder charges, a number of self-styled swamis in India have been “caught in the act”.

Here is the list Indian “sadhus” who claimed to get people “closer to God” but landed up joining the list of people who are fighting cases to remain out of jail. Here’s a list of 7 godmen who were involved in sex scandals:

Asaram Bapu

Express photo by Ashwin Sadhu

Express photo by Ashwin Sadhu

If estimates are to go by, Sant Sri Asaram Bapu had over 40 million disciples. He was one of India’s most followed guru ever since people started understanding the concept of high-profile godmen. In 2013, he was arrested after a 16-year-old accused him of raping her in Jodhpur. He denied allegations and asserted that he was “impotent”. He has been in jail since the time he was arrested. He drew flak over his controversial sexist and misogynic remark on 2012 Gangrape victim. “The girl is guilty as her rapists. She should have called the culprits brothers and begged before them to stop. This could have saved her dignity and life. Can one hand clap? I don’t think so,” he had said.

Sarathi Baba

Photo: Express Archives

Photo: Express Archives

Another self-proclaimed “baba”, Sarathi Baba was filmed checking into a hotel with a woman. In the pictures that went viral, this Odisha’s Baba was seen wearing jeans and T-shirt which triggered a massive controversy. His followers staged massive protests against him while claiming that he should be punished for his “immoral activities”. Later that year, his female companion who was spotted in the pictures, lodged a complaint against Sarathi Baba and four others alleging that they had been harassing her and threatening to release a video of her taking a bath.

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh


Spiritual leader actor, director, singer and the “Messenger of God” Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was on August 25, 2017 convicted on charges of rape. In 2002, one of Gurmeet’s followers had written an anonymous letter to the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee accusing him of sexual abuse. Gurmeet had, time and again, denied allegations and told the court that he was not fit to indulge in physical relationships.

Swami Nithyananda


Swami Nithyananda is another godmen embroiled in a sex scandal. In a sleaze video that was released by a local TV channel in 2010, Swami Nithyananda was caught in a compromising position with an actress. However, he claimed that the images were morphed. In 2012, Nithyananda’s former disciple filed a rape complaint against him.

Sant Rampal

Photo: Express Archives

Photo: Express Archives

Sant Rampal ji Maharaj who was charged with murder reportedly kept “Sadhikayaen” inside his private mansion. His ‘faithful disciples’ spilled beans over his alleged relationship with those girls who lived in a mansion, some of which were reportedly allowed to enter Rampal’s bedroom as his sexual partners.

Ichchadhari Sat Swami Bhimanand ji

Photo: PTI

Photo: PTI

He allegedly ran a sex racket while preaching “spirituality” to his followers for over 10 years. The business was reportedly worth almost Rs 500 crore and he allegedly only catered high-profile clients. According to reports, he ‘supplied’ women to his clients and earned more than a lakh every day. He has, however, denied all the charges.

Kripalu Maharaj


Jagadguru Kripalu Maharaj was just another godman mired in a controversy. According to a Hindustan Times report, one of his followers lodged a sexual harassment case against him. A man had also filed a case against him and accused him of abducting two of his daughters. He died at a private hospital due to a brain injury at the age of 91.

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