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Somnath Bharti arrested; Deepak Khosla asks Kejriwal to stop police calling Bharti names

The protracted war of attrition between Delhi's ex-law minister Somnath Bharti and police ended on Monday evening when Bharti surrendered to police in a domestic violence case filed by his wife Lipika Mitra.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislator from Malviya Nagar constituency in south Delhi reached Dwarka North Police station, hours after the Supreme Court refused his anticipatory bail plea and directed him to surrender.

A bench of Chief Justice H.L. Dattu and Justice Amitabha Roy said earlier that the court will hear his anticipatory bail plea after he surrenders by 6-6.30 p.m. on Monday.

Bharti had been named in an FIR filed at Dwarka North police station in west Delhi following a June 10 complaint by his wife who said he had been abusing her since their marriage in 2010.

She claimed that Bharti used to beat and torture her and once tried to kill her.

Bharti has been booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) relating to attempt to murder, cruelty towards wife, voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapon, criminal breach of trust, attempt to cause miscarriage without woman's consent, cheating and criminal intimidation.

Deepak Khosla reaches out to Kejri

One of Bharti’s lawyers, Deepak Khosla, on Monday requested Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to issue directions to Delhi Police to refrain from describing his client as “absconder”, “professional criminal”, and “hardened criminal”.

The requests were made in a letter written to Kejriwal. However, the Delhi government has denied having received any letter from Bharti’s lawyer.

According to the letter, Bharti’s lawyer Deepak Khosla sought an appointment with the standing counsel and head of the Prosecution Department to discuss Bharti’s matter.

In the letter, accessed by IANS, Khosla wrote: “As regards comments of officers of Delhi Police to the media, you are requested to issue appropriate directions, directing your police officers to refrain from describing my client and/or referring to him as an ‘absconder’, ‘professional criminal’, ‘hardened criminal’.”

Just because he was not appearing before Delhi Police officials does not mean that he is an ‘absconder’, the letter added:

Before I proceed with the main subject matter of this letter, may I be permitted to draw your attention to the fact that if there is one big distinction between Mr. Narendra Modi’s style of functioning and yours - whether good or bad - is that he stands by his loyalists through thick and thin. Cases in point are Sushma Swaraj, Smriti Irani, etc.

Whereas you (prematurely) shed your support for Mr. Somnath Bharti like a hot potato...

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