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Mukhtar Ansari is an Indianmarker criminal-politician from Maunath Bhanjanmarker or Mau in Eastern Uttar Pradeshmarker. Most recently he won the Mau seat in the Uttar Pradesh Elections, 2007 as an Independent, while in prison on charges of murdering rival BJP Member of the Legislative Assembly Krishnand Rai. He is one among many such criminal-politicians in Uttar Pradesh.

Mukhtar was initially a member of the Makhanu Singhgang, which clashed with Sahib Singh's gang over Ghazipurmarker's lucrative contract work mafia, estimated at more than Rs.100 crores a year.Eventually, Makhanu Singh killed Sahib Singh, resulting in brutal reprisals.

In October 1996, when Mukhtar Ansari had pending charges in criminal cases frommurder, extortion, kidnapping, etc., he was inducted into politics by Mayawati'sBahujan Samaj Party. Subsequently, the Bihar Police obtained aconfession from a member of his gang that Ansari was behind the kidnapping and murder of aVishwa Hindu Parishad treasurer, Nand Lal Rungta, in January 2002. However, the chief minister, Mayawati, immediately had the DIG of police transferred for recording this confession.

Mukhtar Ansari's main mafia activity is in coal mining, railway construction and scrap disposal, Public Works construction, and the illicit liquor business.The local contract work mafia business, known as thekedari,was taken over from ganglord Tata Birender Singh when he was killed byBrajesh Singh.In 2001 Brajesh Singhambushed Ansari's convoy on the Mau-Lucknow highway. In the shootout thatfollowed, Mukhtar Ansari lost three of his key men and Brajesh Singh wascritically injured and declared dead soon after. Mukhtar Ansari was 'crowned'the undisputed king of eastern U.P. (Purvanchal).However, a year later Brajesh Singh was spotted in the Mau-Ghazipur areaand the feud allegedly still continues.Brajesh singh was recently arrested on 24 Jan 2008 at Bhubaneswar, Orissa , where he was living under a different identity as a builder and had been running a real estate business in the city.[484532]

Krishnanand Rai Murder

Krishnanand Rai of the Bharatiya Janata Party contested theMohammadabad Assembly seat in the 2002 elections and won it against Mukhtar Ansari's elder brother Afzal Ansari. Allegedly, his election campaign was financed and supported by Brajesh Singh. Subsequently, Rai used his political office to pass many contracts to Brajesh Singh's gang (which had inherited the mantle of Sahib Singh).Mukhtar Ansari has claimed to the press that Krishnanand Rai and Brajesh Singh wereworking as a team and were planning to eliminate him.On the street, the feud between Mukhtar Ansari and the Krishnanand-BrajeshSingh duo was well known and the gangs clashed frequently.

Subsequently, in 2004, Krishnanand Rai won the Member of the Legislative Assembly seat at Mohammadabad, again defeating Afzal Ansari. Subsequently, Krishnanand Rai wastravelling near the Ballia-Ghazipur border when they were ambushed and killed by severalmotorcycle-borne miscreants armed with sophisticated weapons.

After Rai's murder, the seat fell vacant and in the ensuing election,Afzal Ansari wasre-elected MP to the 14th Lok Sabha from the Ghazipur seat.

Later, charges were framed against 10 people including Mukhtar Ansari, Afzal Ansari,and notorious east U.P. gangster Munna Bajrangi in connection with the killing. After some delay,Afzal surrendered in the court. The Ansari brothers and Ejazare presently lodged in Ghazipur district prison.

Mukhtar Ansari was also charged with arson and inciting to riotduring the riots in Mau onOctober 14, 15 and 16, 2005.

Politics

Mukhtar Ansari has changed political affiliation several times, havingbeen with Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party in the beginning, but subsequentlyhe was one of the first to support Mulayam Singh Yadav's (Samajwadi Party). He rejoined the Bahujan Samaj Party unofficially in 2008.

Mukhtar Ansari fought the U.P. State Elections, 2007, while lodged initially Ghazipurmarker jail, where he and his brother have been regularly holding election meetings with supporters. However, the Election Commission ordered him shifted to Jhansi jail.

Like many other criminal-politician candidates, he was fighting as an independent, hoping to make the most of the political uncertainty in the expected situation with no single party coming to majority.His family campaigned for him, and he won the seat, defeating Vijay Pratap of the Bahujan Samaj Partyby a margin of seven thousand votes (4.5%). However, the emergence of BSP as the single majority partymay dampen some of his powerbroking opportunities.

The U.P. Assembly Elections, 2007 also saw Mukhtar Ansari's attempt to initiate a dynasticpolitics. His wife, Afsan, brother Sibakatullah and his brother's son Mohammed Majid contested fromGhazipurmarker Sadar and Mohammadabad asIndependent candidates. Sibakatullah won and is currently a member of the Vidhan Sabha.

See also



References

  1. Extracts from the Affidavit Submitted to the Venkatswamy Commission
  2. Election Commission Results, Mau Constituency



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