A Delhi court Tuesday acquitted former Delhi law minister and AAP MLA Somnath Bharti for allegedly leading a mob that assaulted a foreign national in 2014, after the woman didn’t turn up to depose in court. Police said on September 24, 2014, Mukoko Misa Tresor, a citizen of Democratic Republic of Congo, who was then a student at Amity University, Noida, was allegedly assaulted by a mob led by Bharti.
An FIR was lodged on September 26, 2014, following which the court framed charges against Bharti under IPC sections 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 147 (punishment for rioting), read with section 149 and under section 109. Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Harvinder Singh acquitted Bharti of the aforementioned offences.
Lalit Pingolia, prosecutor appearing for police, said all their “material witnesses have been examined” and he “does n’t want to examine further witnesses”. The court closed prosecution evidence.
Tresor never turned up to depose, records show. ACMM Vishal Pahuja, who was presiding over the matter before ACMM Singh, had issued multiple summons to Tresor, which went unserved.
On March 3, when a final opportunity to appear expired, the court observed in its order, “… It will not be out of place to mention that process for service of complainant witness Mukoko Misa Tresor was initiated in November, 2018; since then, sufficient time… has been granted to prosecution to ensure her presence… court cannot wait indefinitely for appearance of complainant; matter has to be proceeded further by dropping said witness.”
Bharti told the court he “does not want to lead evidence”, following which defence evidence was closed.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines