The Uttar Pradesh Government on Friday recommended a CBI investigation in the murder of Akhil Gupta, a crucial witness in the alleged rape case against the self-styled Godman Asaram Bapu.

Gupta, a resident of Muzaffarnagar was Asaram’s personal aide and his former cook. He was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Muzaffarnagar on the night of January 11 while he was returning home. There was no headway in cracking his murder case.

The State government recommended the CBI probe, a day after the victim in the alleged rape case against Asaram wrote to the Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav seeking a CBI investigation into the death of three crucial witnesses and attacks on the rest.

Highlighting failure of any progress in her case, as well as cases regarding attacks on the witnesses, the victim underlined the need for a CBI investigation.

Asaram had allegedly sexually assaulted the then 16-year-old victim at his Ashram near Jodhpur in August 2013.

Mentioning that Asaram alias Asumal allegedly sexually assaulted her in his ashram in Jodhpur some 23 months back, she wrote,” Since the time he (Asaram) went to jail there have been nine attacks on witnesses in which six of them were seriously injured. Three of the witnesses were killed and many of them changed their statements and turned hostile due to fear of their life and terror of attack,” she wrote in the letter a copy of which is in the possession of The Hindu.

While talking about “failure” of the police in identifying and arresting accused who were behind fatal attacks on Amrit Prajapati, Kripal Singh and Akhil Gupta, she wrote,” the police has not been able to find out who killed the three crucial witnesses in my case.”

“I request you to constitute a CBI probe to find out who is betting the witnesses in the rape case against Asaram, killed. So that the culprits are punished and victims get justice.

The victim, a college student whose life is nearly limited to her house and is “living under constant threat and fear”, alleged that the Godman has “got his men to file cases against me and my parents to pressurise us in compromising. I hope you will help us in getting justice.”

Till now three crucial witnesses were killed and nine of them were attacked allegedly by the hired goons of the self-styled godman.

The recommendation for the CBI probe also comes days after another crucial witness Kripal Singh was fatally attacked allegedly by Asaram’s goons.

Few days back, the victim’s father had handed over an audio tape in which he alleged Asaram was heard bribing Kripal Singh. Kripal Singh died last week after he was attacked allegedly by Asaram’s goons Sanjay and Raghav. Both of them were named by Kripal Singh in his dying declaration.