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Acts Like That Of Somnath Bharti Are Destructive For Both AAP And Delhi

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By Shibayan Raha:

The facade of a popular people powered government seems to be fading away very quickly in Delhi. If it was the alleged gang-rape of a Danish tourist the other day and the reaction of the chief minister, today it is the act of vigilante justice by Aam Aadmi Party volunteers that have shocked us again.

somnath bhartiThe incident involving Minister Somnath Bharti yesterday where he went on a raid in Khirki extension late at night against what he alleged was prostitution and the drama after that, smacks of racism. Some reference from him:

“Yeh hum aur aap jaise nahin hain (They are not like you or me),” Bharti said.

He also claimed “Nigerian nationals are involved in prostitution and drug trafficking in the Khirki village area.” – Source: IBN Live . But Minister Bharti didn’t or failed to even provide evidence to back his claim. The Delhi police said the Nigerian national against whom Somnath Bharti had levelled allegations, has not tested positive for any drugs.

“Less than 24 hours after he led a midnight raid and tried to bully police into arresting some “Nigerians or Ugandans” who he alleged were members of “a prostitution-and-drug ring”, Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti returned to the very spot on Thursday and asked residents to draw up a list of houses where “such people” live and said he would personally check each one.”

People from the African countries are our guests unless they are engaged in any crime or are sentenced by court of law. Till then we as citizens of a host country don’t have any right to accuse them or harass them in any kind. What Somnath Bharti and Aam Aadmi Party volunteers have done is xenophobic and racist in nature and spirit. Just because Mr. Bharti received complaints from neighbours, he cannot go and barge into someone’s house. Neither can he force the police to do that. There are certain legal ways to do this. File a complaint and follow it up. If it doesn’t happen then go to the court. As a practicing lawyer and as a law minister, he should have known the facts.

Khirki Extension in Malviya Nagar does host a lot of people from the African countries just like many other Indian immigrants. The place is comparatively cheaper and is near to a metro station. Most of the African immigrants are engaged in business like laundry service, eateries, salon, export business to name a few. While some might be engaged in illegal activities but that doesn’t gives us the right to generalise a whole community. If we do that then we should put Aam Aadmi party in the same lines as other mainstream parties.

The above incident and another one where Minister Rakhi Birla wanted cops to break into a house shows an uncanny attempt by Aam Aadmi Party to engage in cheap populist tactics and not effective government in Delhi. The leadership at AAP has to understand one thing: Populist policies won’t give people an effective government and when that doesn’t happen, people will vote them out the same way they did to other parties. Aam Aadmi Party and its leadership needs to rein in its vigilante force right now, suspend Minister Bharti and make sure this incident is not repeated again. This comes from someone who has long believed in the idea of swaraj and the anti-corruption movement led by Arvind Kejriwal.

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  1. Pavan Mayur

    The tone of you is wrong dude…though the ministers are over enthusiastic their acts are rational,Why did the police did not tried to check the premises? Since police or under the governor ,police are not listening to AAP. In your view if a crime is going on or taken place a warrant is compulsory? What shit is this, when did u hear last time the police asked for a warrant to check or arrest some low profile people(both Indian and foreign nationals). If it is the minister is wrong, the police would have proved right in front of the channel cameras instead of arguing and let the culprits escape , at least the police should have checked the houses. Can you give me the link where did u got the info that the Nigerian is not tested for positive? In the news it is said that the people their refused to give blood samples.

  2. speakoutsalem

    We surely are different than them .. Somnath babu keep doing your job. We are indians we can sell as many women / children as we like. Killing daughters is our favourite pass time. We will drink as much as we can. but but how can others indulge in prostitution forget that assumption too .. how the hell can they dress differently. Prostitution is legal in our god damn country but soliciting is not .. Drinking booze – chewing tobacco is a state sponsored job in tamilnadu, so what is the big scene about. If the boot is not shown to somanth bharati – arvind being in power is going to be short lived dream.

  3. Sanjeev Sabhlok

    I’m quite ashamed of this behaviour from Somnath. What is he trying to do?

    As past member of the FREEDOM TEAM OF INDIA, he was committed to defending LIFE AND LIBERTY. And now here he’s imposing his whimsy on random people, taking the law into his own hands, and demanding that policemen who were doing their duty be suspended.

    First of all, if he or his AAP team were involved in wrongful confinement of the women, and assault, they should be ARRESTED AT ONCE. They are a danger to life and liberty in India.

  4. Akshat Seth

    This is what happens when elections are fought on surface issues like corruption with plenty of rhetoric and symbolism. Highly regressive and detrimental. All the time I was defending the AAP from critics in the leftist intellectual circles in JNU but seems as though they were right. This post-ideological thing that the AAP is trying to display will not work. We seriously need to know- are they progressivr or aren’t they?

  5. Adil

    Dude wake up. If your loving police had taken complaints of residents seriously and not taken money from the drug mafia.things would be better and different.The problem with people like shibayan and others in YKA is they think sitting on internet and reading news they know all the solutions to all the problems. Real problem lies out there.Go onto the field then you will understand the reality. What the minister did was required for Delhi and good AAP are doing it and not writing articles on YKA.

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Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

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The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

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