In a major victory to Yogi Adityanath government, the Supreme Court on Friday directed the Punjab government to shift mafia don-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari back to jail in Uttar Pradesh within two weeks.
Rejecting appeals by the Punjab government on threat to Ansari’s life and his ailments, the apex court allowed a plea by the UP government for shifting the mafia don to Banda jail in UP from Punjab’s Rupnagar jail.
After hearing arguments from both sides, a 2-member bench comprising Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice RS Rdddy directed the Punjab government to shift Ansari back to the UP jail within 2 weeks.
On March 4, the Punjab government told the SC the UP government has no fundamental right to seek Ansari’s transfer back to UP.
A sitting BSP MLA from Mau Vidhan Sabha seat, Ansari was lodged in Rupnagar Jail in Punjab in January 2019 in an alleged case of extortion. Many cases including murders are pending against the mafia don in UP.
The Yogi Adityanath government and the Congress had been at loggerheads over the Ansari’s shifting to UP jail. The BJP had alleged the Punjab government was shielding Ansari for unknown reasons.
The state government had gone to the extent of saying Punjab Jail Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa met mafia don’s family and assured him protection in the Punjab jail.
Alka Rai, wife of a slain gangster Krishnand Rai, had written 3 letters to Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, requesting her to ask the Punjab government to shift Ansari to UP. She had alleged the Congress was protecting the mafia don, who was behind the killing of her husband.