Gangsters Act Case: Allahabad HC Adjourns Afzal Ansari’s Plea Challenging Conviction

Afzal Ansari_LegallySpeaking

The Allahabad High Court has adjourned the hearing of a criminal appeal filed by Ghazipur MP Afzal Ansari challenging his conviction and four-year sentence in a gangsters Act case by a trial court of Ghazipur until May 13.

Killing of BJP MLA

The case under the Uttar Pradesh Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986 was initiated against Ansari following the killing of BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai in 2005.

Justice Sanjay Kumar Singh directed to schedule the criminal appeal for the next hearing along with the UP government’s appeal seeking enhancement of Ansari’s sentence in the same gangsters Act case and the criminal revision filed by Piyush Rai, son of Krishna Nand Rai, also seeking enhancement of the sentence.

Previously, Ansari was disqualified as an MP following a judgment of a special MP-MLA court, Ghazipur, on April 29, 2023, as he was convicted and sentenced for four years and fined Rs 1 lakh in the gangsters Act case.

Granted Bail

Subsequently, Ansari filed the criminal appeal before the high court.

On July 24, 2023, the high court granted bail to Ansari but declined to stay his conviction in the case. Consequently, although Afzal was released from jail, his membership of Parliament was not restored.

Furthermore, he also stood disqualified to contest future Lok Sabha elections as the sentence awarded was more than two years.

Supreme Court

Later, the Supreme Court stayed Ansari’s conviction in the case. Consequently, his membership of Parliament was restored, and he also became eligible to contest the Lok Sabha election. The apex court directed to expedite the hearing of the criminal appeal pending before the high court and directed to decide it by June 30.

Ansari has been nominated by the Samajwadi Party from Ghazipur Lok Sabha constituency. He had won on the Bahujan Samaj Party ticket in the last Lok Sabha election.

The gangsters Act was registered at the Mohammadabad police station of Ghazipur district based on Ansari’s alleged involvement in the murder of Krishnanand Rai in 2005.

The special MP-MLA court, in a judgment dated April 29, 2023, had convicted Ansari along with his younger brother Mukhtar Ansari in a 2007 gangsters Act matter. While Afzal was sentenced for four years, a 10-year jail term was awarded to Mukhtar.

Mukhtar, a gangster and politician, who was serving a jail term, died of cardiac arrest in a hospital in Banda on March 28.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte