U.P. police book MLA Mukhtar Ansari’s wife under Gangsters Act


Family of arrested lawmaker Mukhtar Ansari accuse govt. of vendetta

The Uttar Pradesh police have booked the wife of jailed MLA from Purvanchal, Mukhtar Ansari, and her two brothers under the Gangsters Act for allegedly trespassing on land attached by the government and obtaining official contracts with forged documents.

The latest case follows a series of measures against the politician and his family in the last two months. The MLA’s family however, allege that the government was targeting them to divert attention from its failures.

A case under Section 2/3 (1) of the U.P. Gangsters and Anti-Social Prevention Act was lodged against Afsa Ansari and her two brothers Sharjeel Raza and Anwar Shahzad in Ghazipur district. The police have accused them of illegal possession of land that was already attached and of obtaining government contracts with forged documents.

The three committed “crime like an organized criminal gang”, the Ghazipur police claimed in a statement.

SP Ghazipur Om Prakash Singh said the Gangsters Act was lodged against the three to stop their embezzlement of funds and illegal trespass on property. Chargesheets had been filed in the cases, which were lodged in 2019, he added.

The Gangsters Act against Mr. Ansari’s wife and brothers-in-law comes after the State police booked several of his aides under the same law and also cancelled arms licenses of his associates and kin while seizing their properties.

His alleged associate Suresh Singh’s 23 vehicles worth ₹3.60 crore were seized by the police recently, who said he had acquired them illegally.

On August 8, police demolished an illegal slaughter house linked to the Ansaris in Mau and also razed an “illegal” property owned by them in Dalibagh colony of Lucknow.

In August, the police shot dead an aide of Mr. Ansari in an alleged exchange of fire after the SUV he was travelling in along with four other suspects crashed into a tree in in Lucknow.

The family of the deceased Rakesh Pandey alias Hanuman Pandey, however, accused the police of picking him up from home and then killing him.

Afzal Ansari, BSP MP from Ghazipur and brother of Mr. Mukhtar, accused the State government of vindictive action against the family to “divert attention of people from its failures and main issues.”

“It appears like this is being done in a planned manner,” Mr. Afzal said on the string of cases against the family.

He also condemned the Gangsters Act against his brother’s wife and brothers-in-law. “This shows their attitude towards women. A woman in veil is booked under Gangsters Act along with her brothers and being termed a gang,” said Mr. Afzal.

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