Cops file chargesheet against Somnath Bharti in midnight raid case
The Delhi Police on Saturday filed a supplementary charge sheet in a city court against AAP leader Somnath Bharti in a case of alleged molestation of African women during his midnight-raid last year when he was the Delhi Law Minister.delhi Updated: Oct 04, 2015 01:12 IST
The Delhi Police on Saturday filed a supplementary chargesheet against former city law minister Somnath Bharti in connection with the molestation case against him filed by African women residents of Khirki Extension where he allegedly led a midnight raid last year.
The chargesheet was submitted to the court of Metropolitan Magistrate Ankita Lal in the morning, however, since the judicial officer was on leave, the matter was fixed on October 30 for taking cognisance of the chargesheet.
The brief hearing was attended by advocate Ajay Marwah, who appeared on behalf of the 41-year-old sitting legislator from Malviya Nagar, the IO apprised of the case, and the additional public prosecutor.
The 22-page document includes a Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) report and added the FSL director and a scientist as witnesses in the criminal case against Bharti.
Along with the chargesheet, cops have also filed an additional complaint against Bharti for obstruction of a public servant during the discharge of his duty, sources told HT. The complaint, sources added, has been filed through the Additional DCP.
The cops have filed the sanction to prosecute Bharti from the sanctioning authority, his lawyer told HT. However, Marwah added, that the sanction had only been received for the hate crime charge under Section 153(a) of IPC, and not all the charges on Bharti as per the cops earlier chargesheet filed last year.
In its earlier chargesheet, police had said that “nine African women were victims of molestation and manhandling by a mob led by Bharti” in the Khirki Extension area.
They added that Bharti and his supporters had allegedly misbehaved with several African women during a raid against a suspected drug and prostitution ring.
Bharti has denied the charges.
The fourth AAP leader to be arrested by cops in the last three months, the MLA is currently in police custody being interrogated about a separate domestic violence and attempt to kill case which was filed against him by his estranged wife Lipika Mitra.
On January 16, the court had issued notice to the deputy commissioner of police and given a last chance to IO to get the sanction for prosecution against Bharti expeditiously. The police said it has received the sanction on September 24.
In its charge sheet filed on September 27 last year, Delhi Police had said that “nine African women were victims of molestation and manhandling by a mob led by then law minister Somnath Bharti”.
In the charge sheet, Bharti and 17 others have been booked under various sections of the IPC, including outraging a woman’s modesty, prompting enmity between classes of people, and rioting.
The police had listed 41 people as prosecution witnesses in the case, including nine Ugandan women, who are the complainants and have alleged that they were beaten up and molested by the mob led by Bharti on the intervening night of January 15-16, 2014.