“We were attacked on Wednesday night by Indians who were led by Somnath Bharti...We were harassed, we were beaten, they were having long sticks. They said we should leave their country or else they would kill us one by one,” the Ugandan national said. READ MORE: Delhi Commission for Women summons Somnath Bharti READ MORE: Kejriwal hospitalized, Delhi Police files FIR against AAP protesters (Agencies)
The woman said that she identified Bharti because she saw him on television the next day.
“The Delhi Police came in time and saved us from the mob,” she added.
The woman had recorded her statement before a magistrate yesterday, saying that she would be able to identify the persons who had barged into her house on the intervening night of January 15-16.
The woman recorded her statement in camera under Sec 164 CrPC, which is admissible in court. The statement, which has been given to the police in a sealed cover, will be opened only during the trial.
Bharti came under attack for the midnight raid from women activists, who sought his removal from the post for ‘misbehaving’ with the African woman.
Delhi Commission for Women has issued summons to Bharti after the women alleged that they had been assaulted by the group led by the minister.
"We had asked him to appear before the Commission yesterday but he did not show up. We will be sending another summon through the concerned SHO to him tomorrow. If he still does not appear, we shall write to the Lt Governor and to the Delhi Police Commissioner to register an FIR," Delhi Commission for Women chairperson Barkha Singh said.
In an open letter to the Delhi Chief Minister, a group of women activists including Kavita Krishnan said the Law Minister’s conduct was ‘shocking and is not acceptable’.
Krishnan alleged the simple point is that he has endangered those African women by calling upon a mob to go chase them and catch them.
The activists said that the Delhi Police must be accountable to the Constitution and not to bidding of ministers and mobs.
“These Ugandan women have alleged that they were beaten and groped sexually. On what basis do you deem these allegations to be false? Is it the government’s contention that only ‘ma, behen, beti’ are entitled to safety and dignity – and that prostitutes can be left to the mercy of moralistic mobs?” the activists said in the letter
"Without any other evidence, can women be forced to undergo drug tests only because of their race and nationality? The drug tests and cavity searches to which these women were subjected, turned up negative: when do you plan to apologise to them for the false allegation and the indignity, not to mention the groping they suffered at the hands of your minister's supporters?" the letter said.
"According to the Africans and their Indian friends, the Malviya Nagar SHO Vijay Pal had acted to protect the African women on the night of the raid. Today, this SHO has been penalised – for failing to obey the orders of the minister who expected him to indiscriminately raid the homes of all people of African nationalities," the letter added.
The activists further said this sends out a dangerous message to the police that they will be penalised if they uphold democratic rights of vulnerable individuals as mandated by the Constitution.
NCW chairperson Mamta Sharma on her part said it is now clear that Bharti was present at the spot as it has been confirmed by the Ugandan women after identifying him in the CD.
Sharma said Bharti should have resigned or should have been asked to resign.
“He has no right to go to a woman's place and do this 'harkat' (create a stir). He should have resigned on his own,” she added.
Meanwhile, Air Deccan founder and AAP member Capt G R Gopinath said that while AAP demanded action against police officers pending an inquiry on ground that they may interfere in the probe, the same yardstick should apply to Bharti.
He also said that Arvind Kejriwal and his Cabinet should govern from their offices and only his party workers must protest.
“We were attacked on Wednesday night by Indians who were led by Somnath Bharti...We were harassed, we were beaten, they were having long sticks. They said we should leave their country or else they would kill us one by one,” the Ugandan national said.
READ MORE: Delhi Commission for Women summons Somnath Bharti
READ MORE: Kejriwal hospitalized, Delhi Police files FIR against AAP protesters