The Dera Sacha Sauda chief, Gurmeet Ram Rahim, who was charged with the offence of rape of a female devotee in 1999, was on Friday held guilty by the Special CBI Court of Panchkula.
The quantum of sentence will, however, be announced on August 28.
Army has taken Ram Rahim Singh into protective custody and he will be transferred to a military base.
The decision came as soon as the Special CBI Court began the hearing on the case on Friday.
Earlier Dera supporters received false rumours that their guru has been acquitted. The crowds broke into loud cheers and celebrations began. However, it remains to be seen how the 2 to 3 lakh supporters will react once the news of Ram Rahim's conviction spreads out, as emotions run high.
The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF) and the state police were present inside the premises of the court, when Justice Jagdeep Singh read out the verdict.
The case was registered by the CBI in 2002 against the self-styled godman after allegations of sexual exploitation of two women followers through anonymous letters.
On August 17, the Special CBI court concluded hearing in the case, but reserved pronouncing the verdict for today.