The location of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Somnath Bharti — who has gone underground to evade arrest in a domestic violence case — was traced to Meerut on Friday, following which a team was dispatched to the area.
The AAP MLA, sources said, had been traced near the Taj Mahal in Agra on Thursday.
Police on Friday claimed that two alleged criminals from Haryana and UP were assisting Bharti shuffle between Delhi and NCR.
According to sources, after Agra, Bharti’s location on Friday was traced to Meerut following which a team was dispatched to the area to raid his possible hideouts.
Joint commissioner of police, south western range, Dependra Pathak said, “We have information about two people — having criminal records — who are with Bharti and are constantly helping him change locations. He is behaving like a professional criminal and the methods he is adopting to evade arrest shows that he is getting assistance from professionals. He has been changing his phone numbers and shifting his base. Our teams are on the job and we will bring him in to on the investigations at the earliest.”
Bharti has till now changed over a dozen phone numbers, location of his stay and vehicles used to flee - something which police say is not possible without assistance. “Bharti has used over a dozen prepaid mobile phone numbers procured under different names and has been shuttling between Delhi, UP and Haryana. We have informed the interstate police regarding him, but since he has been changing his location so frequently it has been difficult nabbing him. He is not in touch with any of his family members, but is constantly keeping in touch with his lawyer,” a senior police officer said.
The police have so far questioned more than 12 persons including Bharti’s brother - Loknath Bharti - whose name has been mentioned in the complaint filed by Bharti’s wife Lipika Mitra for abusing her. Bharti’s private secretary and some party workers too have been questioned to ascertain the AAP MLA’s location.
According to the police, apart from the two alleged criminals helping Bharti evade arrest, there are three more persons who helped him evade the police. “Cars, cash and mobile numbers were provided to Bharti by these people. The men will also be booked for facilitating Bharti. In order to escape from the state police, Bharti has also been changing clothes and vehicles. Everyone assisting Bharti by providing shelter and other resources will be booked,” police said.