Spiritual leader denies sexual abuse allegations

London (IANS): A spiritual leader, who was attacked during a visit to Britain last year, has denied claims that he sexually abused his assailant many years ago, terming it “totally absurd”.

Sri Satguru Uday Singh Ji said he had never even visited a village in the Indian state of Punjab where his attacker alleges he was sexually assaulted as a child, media reported.

The spiritual head of the Namdhari sect of the Sikhs, who was on a visit from India, was assaulted with an axe at Gurdwara Namdhari in the city of Leicester by 27-year-old Harjit Singh Toor in the early hours of Aug 10 last year.

Prosecutor Gordon Aspden alleged that the pre-dawn attack in the packed temple was motivated by religious hatred.

But Toor, of Oadby, Leicestershire, claimed at the Birmingham Crown Court that he was sexually abused by Uday Singh Ji in 1994 and 1995 before the latter was elevated to his now holy status in India.

When the spiritual leader was asked by the prosecutor if there was a word of truth in the allegations, he said: “Absolutely none, it’s totally absurd.”

“I have never met him (Toor) as far as my memory goes,” the BBC quoted Uday Singh Ji as saying.

“I have not met him and there is no question of any events happening – I have never visited that particular village at all,” he said.

“When he walked in, he was walking slowly. When he came close, he removed his shawl and suddenly came out with the axe,” the Leicester Mercury quoted the victim as saying.

The spiritual leader said that the attacker swung the axe targeting his head as he came on the platform.

“My sudden reaction was to lift my right arm and move slightly backwards,” he added.

“I had a lot of pain in my arm, it was excruciating.”

Earlier, the court saw CCTV footage showing worshippers wrestling the defendant to the ground and kicking him.