Allahabad high court defers hearing in Afzal Ansari’s case till July 2:


The Allahabad High Court on Monday adjourned till July 2, 2024 the hearing of a criminal appeal filed by Ghazipur MP Afzal Ansari challenging his conviction and four years’ sentence in a Gangsters Act case by a trial court of Ghazipur.


This case was imposed on Afzal following the killing of BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai in 2005.


Along with this present criminal appeal, this court is also hearing connected UP govt’s appeal seeking enhancement of sentence of Afzal in the same case and criminal revision filed by Piyush Kumar Rai, son of Krishnanand Rai, also seeking enhancement of sentence.


During the course of hearing on Monday, appellant Afzal’s counsel Upendra Upadhyay informed the court that an objection has been filed before the registry on behalf of the appellant against the connected criminal revision filed by Piyush Kumar Rai and also in Government Appeal, where a common request has been made to enhance the sentence of appellant.


After this, Justice Sanjay Kumar Singh adjourned the hearing of this criminal appeal till July 2, 2024.


An MP-MLA court of Ghazipur had on April 29, 2023, convicted Afzal and sentenced him to four years jail and imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh in the Gangsters’ Act case. His younger brother Mukhtar Ansari too was sentenced to 10 years in jail in the case.


Following this, Afzal was disqualified as an MP. Thereafter, he filed the present criminal appeal before the high court.


On July 24, 2023, the high court had granted bail to the five-time MLA and two-time MP but declined to stay his conviction in the case. As a result, though Afzal was released from jail, his membership of Parliament was not restored. Further, he also became disqualified to contest future polls as the sentence awarded was more than two years.


However, later the Supreme Court stayed his conviction, as a result, his membership of Parliament was restored, and he also became eligible to contest the Lok Sabha election. However, the apex court directed the HC to expedite the hearing and decide the case by June 30.

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