Mukhtar Ansari convicted with life term in decades-old fake firearms permit case

In 1986, a Varanasi court sentenced renowned criminal-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari to life in prison for charges involving forgery and conspiracy to get a double-barrel pistol licence.

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The Varanasi Special Judge (MP/MLA) court has sentenced Mukhtar Ansari, a former mafia don who is now a politician, to life in prison. He is accused of lying, forging documents, engaging in criminal conspiracy, and breaking the Arms Act in order to get a license to carry a double-barrel gun in 1986. On Wednesday, the court will declare the sentencing. Ansari has been found guilty eight times since September 2022.

Charges of Ansari! 

Special Judge (MP/MLA) Avnish Gautam found Ansari guilty under sections 420 (cheating), 467 (forgery), 468, 120B (criminal conspiracy), and section 30 of the Arms Act, according to Vinay Singh, the assistant district government counsel (criminal). Under the Prevention of Corruption Act's section 13(2), Ansari was, nevertheless, found not guilty.

Forgery for a double barrel! 

Ansari made an appearance via videoconference from Banda jail, Singh said. The maximum penalty is a life sentence in jail. In 1986, Ansari forged the signatures of the superintendent of police and district magistrate in Ghazipur to get a license to carry a double-barrel firearm.

Flashback from the 90s 

When the details became known in 1990, Ansari was the target of a Ghazipur FIR. Afterwards, the Central Bureau of probe (CBI) was given control of the probe. Ansari and Gauri Shankar Lal, an arms clerk at the time, were named in the CBI chargesheet. The trial was held before the court of the extra district judge (anti-corruption) and special judge (MP/MLA) of Varanasi because the charges included a part of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Ten witnesses, including the previous superintendent of police and district magistrate, as well as former officials, CBI agents, and forensic specialists, were questioned by the prosecution during the trial.

Ansari is behind bars

Presently incarcerated in Banda jail, Mukhtar Ansari is dealing with 61 criminal offenses. Ansari was convicted to five and a half years in prison by the MP/MLA court in Varanasi on December 15, 2017, in connection with his threats against a witness in the 1997 kidnapping case of the VHP treasurer. In a Gangsters Act case, Mukhtar was sentenced to ten years in prison on April 29, 2023. Afzal Ansari, his brother and co-accused, received a four-year sentence and lost his membership in the Lok Sabha.

SC's silence was loud!

On December 14, Afzal was able to rejoin Parliament, but nevertheless, the Supreme Court stayed his sentence. Mukhtar was earlier given a seven-year prison sentence by the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court for threatening and pointing a weapon at a jailer on September 21, 2022. On September 23, 2022, the former MLA was sentenced to five years in prison under the Gangsters Act by the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court.

On December 15, 2022, the MP-MLA court of Ghazipur granted Mukhtar and his close associate Bhim Singh a 10-year hard sentence term in a separate Gangsters Act case that was filed against them in 1996. On April 29, Mukhtar and his brother Afzal Ansari, who had been charged under the Gangsters Act in 2007 following the murder of Krishnanand Rai, were given sentences of 10 years and 4 years in prison, respectively. In a 2009 Gangsters Act case, he was given a 10-year prison sentence by the MPMLA court in Ghazipur on October 27, 2022.