Underlining that the alleged role of former law minister Somnath Bharti has already surfaced in the complainant’s version, the Delhi Law and Justice department has said there is no need to include Bharti’s name in the FIR lodged in connection with a midnight raid against African women in Khirki Extension.
In its opinion rendered to the Delhi Home department, the Law department also said there was no need to file a fresh FIR in the case, sources in the government said. The Home department had sought an opinion from the Law department whether there was a need to either file a fresh FIR in the case or include Bharti’s name in the existing FIR.
According to the Law department, statements by complainants and witnesses recorded by the police under Section 161 of the Code of Criminal Procedure were already on record and, hence, no further action relating to the registration of FIR was needed.
Bharti’s name has not been added to the FIR registered by police. It is understood that once the chargesheet in the case is filed, his name can be added if investigation throws up prima facie evidence against him. At that stage, police may also seek a sanction to prosecute Bharti to pre-empt a contention that he was acting in the discharge of his official duty.
Lt-Governor Najeeb Jung had ordered an inquiry into the incident on the intervening night of January 15-16. Bharti allegedly led a group of local residents to conduct a midnight raid in the houses of some African residents in Khirki Extension, South Delhi.
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Bharti had allegedly claimed that a drugs-and-prostitution ring was being run from the locality by some African nationals.
Initially, he had demanded that police raid the place. However, when they refused saying they had no warrant to do so, he allegedly led the mob on the raid.
The inquiry report, which was submitted to Jung, was forwarded to the Home and Law and Justice departments, seeking their views.
According to sources, at least three foreign women have till date recorded their statements before a magistrate, describing the incident of the intervening night of January 15-16.
The FIR was lodged on a direction of the court after an African woman alleged she and other women were subjected to a cavity search during their medical examination at AIIMS and that the minister and his people had asked them to give urine samples in public.
On her plea, the court had ordered registration of an FIR against unknown persons under Sections 451 (house trespass), 427 (mischief) and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) of the IPC.