Days after self-styled godman and Sacha Sauda Dera cult chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim was convicted on two rape cases and was sentenced imprisonment for 20 years, sanitisation of Dera headquarters in Sirsa of Haryana have begun on court’s order.

Under heavy security and not just one but hundreds of paramilitary eyes on Dera Sacha Sauda headquarters at Satnaam Chowk in Sirsa district of Haryana – the search operation to sanitise the inside of Dera has begun today. 41 paramilitary companies, 4 Army columns, cops from 4 districts, a SWAT team, a dog squad, bomb disposal squads, commandos, locksmiths and a chopper are deployed and the team will be led by IGP Hisar Range Amitabh Singh Dhillon, including six IPS officers and 12 DSP and paramilitary jawans. The mega search operation will be carried out under the supervision of court commissioner AKS Pawar appointed by the Punjab and Haryana high court and the entire operation will be video-graphed.

Spread in a vast area of 700-acres, the entire Dera campus will be rigorously searched to sanitise the area and clear off any suspicious activity being carried out there. To carry out the entire operation peacefully, curfew has been held in areas near the Dera, roads coming to or from Dera are being sealed and 16 checkpoints have been deployed around the area to keep a keen eye on every movement – to avoid any violence.

Such a level of heavy security has been arranged keeping in mind the violent tendency of Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s followers and devotees, who broke out violence in Panchkula after conviction hearing last month – which killed 35 people and injured over 600. So all the tight deployment is to maintain peace among a huge mass of devotees among which few are already living in the Dera township permanently. The Dera town consists of a stadium, a hospital, educational institutions, luxury resort, bungalows and markets. It is also said that the area where Ram Rahim lived is called ‘gufa’ and is spread across 100 acres with ultra-luxury facilities – so much of a saint’s life. Sanitisation will make sure that no illegal or unconstitutional activities are carried out in the ‘devotional’ place and people are safe.