NEW DELHI--While the "hide and seek" game continued between Delhi's former law minister Somnath Bharti and the police on Friday over a domestic violence case filed by his wife, the police picked up his pet Labrador --"Don" -- from his Malviya Nagar residence in south Delhi.
'Don', who had allegedly attacked Bharti's wife Lipika Mitra at the behest of Bharti, is now at the centre of a police probe, say reports.
Delhi police team reaches Somnath Bharti's residence to arrest him, picks up his dog 'Don' instead. pic.twitter.com/U2vC4xQdns— ANI (@ANI_news) September 25, 2015
Immediately after the news, people on social media blamed the Delhi police for torturing the dog.
I sincerely request Delhi Police
to solve their Somnath Bharti problem. Ultimately the one paying the price is poor DON - Bharti's dog.— $ir $ri $ri Magal (@jhunjhunwala) September 25, 2015
Hey Commissioner Bassi, how's it going with Don? Is he singing yet? Hard nut to crack I'm told.— Prasanto K Roy (@prasanto) September 25, 2015
Delhi Police couldn't catch AAP MLA Somnath Bharti, so catches his dog Don instead? Is that what they'll convey to Supreme Court on Monday?— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) September 25, 2015
Well, social media, it's time to thank the Delhi police. 'Don' wasn't picked up for questioning.
The police took the dog to a veterinary clinic to get the ailing Labrador examined. The dog, which is at the centre of the police probe against Bharti, suffers from heart disease and requires regular medication.
According to an earlier Indian Express report, the dog had been left behind at Bharti’s office and not been given his medicines, ever since the leader went underground after the Delhi High Court rejected his anticipatory bail plea.
Gulshan Kumar, Bharti’s associate, told Indian Express that the police took the dog to the clinic. “After inquiring about the dog’s health, they asked where his medicines were. We said the medicines are in the cupboard which is locked. We then took the dog in their vehicle to a pet clinic," he said.
Meanwhile, police have reportedly traced Bharti's hideout and says he is hiding somewhere in Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh.
"On Friday morning, a phone of some of his friends being used by him was traced near Haryana. But now the phone has been found switched off. His new location might be in western Uttar Pradesh." Joint Commissioner of Police Deependra Pathak told IANS that Bharti was behaving like a professional criminal and changing his locations.
Bharti was named in an FIR filed at Dwarka north police station in west Delhi following a complaint by Bharti's wife Lipika Mitra who said he had been abusing her since their marriage in 2010. She claimed that Bharti used to beat and torture her and once even tried to kill her.
Delhi Police then registered an FIR against Bharti 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.