Uttar Pradesh MLA Mukhtar Ansari produced before Punjab court in extortion case

CHANDIGARH: Gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari, who is wanted in Uttar Pradesh for various cases, was on Wednesday produced before a Mohali court in connection with an alleged 2019 extortion matter.

The court fixed April 12 as the next date in this case, a police official said.

Amid tight security arrangements, Ansari was taken to court in a wheelchair.

He was sent back to Punjab’s Rupnagar jail in an ambulance after the appearance.

The Supreme Court had recently directed the Punjab government to hand over the custody of Ansari to the Uttar Pradesh Police, saying it was being denied on trivial grounds under guise of medical issues.

‚ÄčALSO READ | SAD seeks probe into Punjab’s ‘conspiracy’ of giving Mukhtar Ansari ‘political shelter’ in its jail

The apex court had also said that a convict or an undertrial prisoner, who disobeys the law of the land, cannot oppose his transfer from one prison to another and the courts are not to be a helpless bystander when the rule of law is being challenged with impunity.

The court had said the custody of Ansari, an MLA from Mau constituency, be handed over to Uttar Pradesh within two weeks so as to lodge him in Banda district jail in Uttar Pradesh.

The apex court had also noted that Ansari was allegedly involved in various cases of attempt to murder, murder, cheating and conspiracy apart from offences under the Gangsters Act, lodged in Uttar Pradesh and out of them, 10 cases are at the stages of trial.

The opposition Shiromani Akali Dal had accused the Punjab government of giving “political shelter” to Ansari by keeping him in the Rupnagar jail as a “state guest” on “trumped-up charges”.