Nepal police arrest ‘Buddha boy’ over allegations of rape, sexual abuse

By Gopal Sharma

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – A Nepali man who thousands believed was a reincarnation of the Buddha and who drew international attention as a teenager has been arrested over allegations of rape and sexual abuse, police said on Wednesday.

The Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) of Nepal police said they arrested Ram Bahadur Bomjon, 33, on Tuesday from a house on the outskirts of Kathmandu where he had been hiding.

“Our team arrested him while he was trying to escape by jumping from the window of the house,” CIB said in a statement.

As a teenager, Bomjon became known as “Buddha boy” and he made international headlines in 2005 after followers said he could meditate motionless without any water, food or sleep for several days.

He drew more than 100,000 people to the dense forests of south-eastern Nepal to see him sitting cross-legged beneath a tree.

Bomjon could not be reached for comment in police custody and it was not clear if he had a lawyer yet.

CIB spokesperson Nawaraj Adhikari said Bomjon would be sent to Sarlahi district court which had issued an arrest warrant for him.

(Reporting by Gopal Sharma; Editing by YP Rajesh, Alexandra Hudson)