Somanth Bharti. Image courtesy: Facebook

Investigators today failed to file the status report before a court here in a case lodged by them against unnamed persons for allegedly molesting an African woman during a midnight raid by a group purportedly led by Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti.

Delhi Police, investigating the case, filed the list of witnesses before Metropolitan Magistrate Chetna Singh in a closed envelop and has sought time to submit full report within a month.

Court sources said the investigators have listed 40 prosecution witnesses, out of which 12 are African women whose statements have also been recorded before the magistrate.

It further said the police sought time saying the probe is at an initial stage and they need more time to file the report.

“March 26 is fixed for filing of report,” the court said.

On January 19, police had lodged an FIR against unnamed persons under various sections of the IPC, including 153-A (promoting enmity between classes), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 354 (outraging women’s modesty), 509 (uttering any word or making any gesture intended to insult the modesty of a woman), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 147 (rioting) at the Malviya Nagar police station.

The FIR was lodged on the court’s direction after an Ugandan woman had approached it on January 18 seeking to file a criminal case against unnamed persons.

Later, a second African woman had moved the court seeking registration of a separate FIR alleging she was also molested by the group.

The second woman had claimed the group had forcibly held her hands and took her out of the house along with her sisters who reside with her.

However, the court had refused to order lodging of a separate FIR on her plea and said the Ugandan woman be also made co-complainant in the first FIR lodged by police on Janaury 19 as she is also a victim of the same incident.

The foreign women, whose statements were recorded before the magistrate, had alleged Bharti, the MLA from Malviya Nagar, barged into their house along with his supporters on the intervening night of January 15-16, court sources said.

In the earlier application filed before the court, the foreign national had alleged she and the other women were subjected to a cavity search during their medical examination at AIIMS and the minister and his people had asked them to give urine samples in public.

Television footage on news channels had shown Bharti asking police officers to conduct the raid as he had received complaints of drugs and prostitution racket in that area.

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