Friday, Oct 31, 2014

Defiant Bharti plans sting, CM backs him

Rakhi Birla and Somnath Bharti flank Kejriwal at a press conference after the raids. Archive Rakhi Birla and Somnath Bharti flank Kejriwal at a press conference after the raids. (Photo: Express Archive)
Express News Service | New Delhi | Posted: January 19, 2014 2:46 am | Updated: January 19, 2014 10:34 am

Under fire for his vigilante raid on Ugandan nationals living in South Delhi’s Khirki Extension, who he claimed were involved in sex racketeering and drug trafficking, Law Minister Somnath Bharti on Saturday announced that he would expose the sex racket in the locality soon. 

On Thursday, Bharti had attempted to force the Malviya Nagar police to raid and arrest Nigerians and Ugandans, some of them women, claiming that they were members of a sex-and-drug trafficking racket. Police refused to take orders from him, saying they did not have a search warrant.

He had allegedly forced four Ugandan women to undergo drug tests, who have since filed police complaints against AAP volunteers.

A day later, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal too backed Bharti’s actions and met Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung and Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde to demand the suspension of police officers involved in the incident.

On Saturday, Kejriwal reiterated that he and his council of ministers would hold a demonstration outside Shinde’s office in North Block, if the three SHOs and two ACPs are not placed under suspension by 10 am on Monday.

Bharti tweeted, “Will do an expose in sometime on sex racketeering in khirki ext”. When contacted, Bharti said he had stopped talking to the media because of the flak he received over the Khirki Extension raid.

He also plans to hold a public meeting in Khirki Extension on Sunday. The announcement comes two days after he asked residents there to draw up a list of houses where “activities of such people” are noticed.

According to Bharti, he will personally visit such houses and urge police to do the same.

Trying to minimise damage to his fledgling government, Kejriwal said his government was strongly opposed to “any harassment on the basis of nationality, caste, creed, religion and gender”. He blamed the Union Home Ministry and the Delhi Police for the incident.

“The Home Ministry which exercises complete control over the Delhi Police should squarely take the blame for the compromises being made by the Delhi Police with regard to the safety and security of the people of the city,” Kejriwal said.

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