Chandigarh, September 15: Haryana Education Minister Ram Vilas Sharma on Friday announced the state government today cancelled its grant of Rs 50 Lakh to Dera Sacha Sauda. The grant was given to Dera Sacha Sauda on August 15 this year when the organisation celebrated the birthday of Gurmeet Ram Rahim. The education minister said that the government cancelled its grant on August 25 when Ram Rahim was convicted by a CBI court in Panchkula in 2002 rape case.

After his conviction, the Haryana Government faced huge criticism by people for making the grant. People alleged the grant was made for the favour by Ram Rahim during Haryana assembly elections. Dera Sacha Sauda had extended its support to Bharatiya Janata Party. Dera enjoys a significant following in Sirsa and adjacent districts of both states.

This apart, Haryana Sports Minister Anil Vij too had given Rs 50 Lakh to Dera. He had said, “Science, education, sports… this means that efforts are underway to create a complete human. You people are popularizing our sports and to further promote it, I am giving Rs 50 lakh from my discretionary fund.”

Punjab and Haryana High Court had too criticised the government for its lackadaisical approach to the violence unleashed by Dera supporters on August 25. The court in its observation said the government was providing political patronage to Dera and its Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim.

CBI Court had sentenced self-styled godman to 20 years of imprisonment.