Fake godman arrested for sexually assaulting women
A 46-year-old fake godman, who allegedly sexually assaulted women, was arrested by the Panvel city police on Tuesday following a complaint by a victim.
Kashinath Patil alias Kashinath maharaj is a resident of Vadavli village in Panvel and performed duties as the ‘maharaj’ of Cheroba Devasthan temple in the village.
According to senior inspector Sunil Bajare, “Patil had spread the word that he knew black magic. He claimed that he could help women who could not bear children.”
“He lured women from Mumbai, Thane and Raigad areas and sexually assaulted them,” said Bajare.
Bajare said when some women activists heard about the maharaj, they approached him on December 11. They told Patil that they were unable to bear children.
“Patil took them to a room in the temple. After rubbing coconut, lemon, hen and rooster on her body, he molested and sexually assaulted her,” said Bajare.
The woman complained to the police on Tuesday, following which a team led by assistant inspector ST Jadhav and SU Jadhav arrested Patil. They seized the items he used for his tricks to mislead people.
“So far, around five women have come forward and filed complaints against the bogus baba. If there are more such women who have been exploited by Patil, we appeal them to complaint to us,” said Bajare.
Patil has been booked under the Maharashtra Prevention and Eradication of Human Sacrifice and other Inhuman, Evil and Aghori Practices and Black Magic Act, 2013.
Arti Naik, a member of Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmulan Samiti, said: “Such acts are prevalent in rural areas. It was because the women came forward and filed a complaint that the culprit has been caught. There is a need to encourage more women to speak out against such crimes.”