AAP leader and former Delhi law minister Somnath Bharti was granted bail by a Delhi court Thursday, a few hours after his arrest in a case related to a dispute over a boundary wall of AIIMS. Bharti has been accused of inciting a crowd to damage a part of the AIIMS boundary wall and misbehaving with security officials on September 9.
Bharti was put under arrest following questioning at Hauz Khas police station. On September 9, Bharti had allegedly provoked a mob into damaging the wall of the hospital with a JCB at Gautam Nagar Nallah Road to give unauthorised persons access inside AIIMS property, said a police officer. He was there with his supporters, the officer added.
AIIMS chief security officer, R S Rawat, lodged a complaint with police, alleging that a group of people led by Bharti abused security personnel and disrupted the peace of the hospital.
Following the complaint, a case was registered under sections 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of his public functions), 353 (assault or use of criminal force to deter a public servant from discharge of his duty) of the IPC and 3/4 Prevention of damage to Public Property Act at Hauz Khas police station.
Bharti, MLA from Malviya Nagar constituency, had described the allegations as lies.
Meanwhile, AIIMS said in a statement it would issue an appreciation certificate to its security officials for showing courage and resilience in protecting AIIMS property in the face of grave intimidation.
What the court said, “Considering the facts of the case and nature of offences, and the fact that the applicant/accused is an MLA and member of the bar, and therefore, chances of fleeing from the process of this court, are remote, I am not inclined to send him to judicial custody, and he deserves to be granted bail,” said Metropolitan Magistrate Anuj Agarwal.
On being asked why Bharti was arrested, police said he was not cooperating in the investigation and had also refused to receive their notice. During proceedings, police had pressed for 14 days’ judicial custody of Bharti.