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HindustanTimes Fri,29 Aug 2014

I was not aware of procedures: Somnath Bharti

PTI  New Delhi, January 25, 2014
First Published: 22:16 IST(25/1/2014) | Last Updated: 10:29 IST(26/1/2014)

Delhi law minister Somnath Bharti, focus of several controversies, on Saturday said his intentions were good but he was projected in "wrong way" and had he been "aware" of procedures, he could have avoided the wrangles.

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Bharti, an Aam Aadmi Party MLA from Malviya Nagar, is facing cases and criticism from political opponents for a midnight raid against some African women in south Delhi, where he had alleged a drug and prostitution racket had been thriving.

"I am not aware of procedures. If I would have known them, I would not have made these alleged mistakes," Bharti said while addressing lawyers on the eve of Republic Day at Saket district courts premises in New Delhi.

"I am doing things for you (common man). I went on raid at late night, risking my life," he said, referring to the midnight incident at Khirki Extension in Delhi, in the function organised by Saket Court Bar Association.

Criticising Delhi police, he said, "This is the job of police, but I personally went there. I am doing this because of concerns of people who have elected me as their representative.

"Many took me wrong. My intentions were good, but it is projected in a wrong way," the minister said.

Read: Won't lodge fresh FIR in midnight raid case: Police to court

"I am new to this system, so I may commit mistakes, but someone should come forward and guide me. This system has been formed by common people, so I would try my best to give them a corruption-free system," he said.

The minister, whose ouster from the Arvind Kejriwa Cabinet is being demanded by political opponents, criticised media and said his opponents were using news reports to "project" him in a "wrong manner".

"Reporters present here will go and give their reports, but the persons sitting above are closely associated with other political parties and it is they who project me in a wrong manner," he said.

Besides Bharti, SCBA President Rajpal Kasana, his deputy Arun Rathi and over 100 lawyers were also present.

The law minister said more Additional Public Prosecutors in all six district courts complexes should be appointed to fast-track trials.


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