1995 criminal case: Defying over 100 NBWs, SP’s Meerut MLA finally arrested - Hindustan Times

1995 criminal case: Defying over 100 NBWs, SP’s Meerut MLA finally arrested

By, Meerut/prayagraj
May 28, 2024 05:02 AM IST

Meerut city MLA Rafiq Ansari arrested in Lucknow for defying over 100 NBWs in a 1995 criminal case. Allahabad HC ordered arrest due to non-compliance.

Police on Monday arrested Samajwadi Party’s Meerut city MLA Rafiq Ansari from Lucknow as the legislator defied over 100 non-bailable warrants (NBWs) issued against him by the Allahabad high court in a 1995 criminal case having arson and other charges.

After arresting him, police brought SP MLA Rafiq Ansari to Meerut on May 27. (Sourced)
After arresting him, police brought SP MLA Rafiq Ansari to Meerut on May 27. (Sourced)

A team of Meerut Police made the arrest in compliance with the high court’s order, said additional director general (ADG) of police, Meerut division, DK Thakur.

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Police swung into action after the Allahabad high court took cognisance of the issue and directed the state’s director general of police to arrest the MLA and present him before the court in the 29-year-old case. The court had also issued notices to the SSP and the DM of Meerut over non-compliance of the NBWs.

Dismissing an application filed by Rafiq Ansari seeking quashing of criminal proceedings against him in the said case, the Allahabad high court in its order dated April 29, 2024, said: “Non execution of non-bailable warrant against the sitting MLA and allowing him to participate in assembly session will set a perilous and egregious precedent.”

“By allowing individuals facing serious criminal charges to evade legal accountability, we risk perpetuating a culture of impunity and disrespect for the rule of law,” the court had said. On Monday, ADG, Meerut division, DK Thakur said, “It is negligence of police that he was not presented before the court.”

On being asked whether an inquiry will be set up to probe the police laxity into the matter, he said, “The DGP will submit the status report in the court and he can take a decision regarding it.” The MLA’s lawyer Amit Dixit said: “It is sheer negligence of police who made no efforts to present him before the court even after issuance of over 100 NBWs.”

“My client was very much available but the police seldom made any efforts to ensure compliance with NBWs issued against him,” Dixit claimed. As per the legislator’s lawyer, clashes broke out between Ansari and Qureshi communities in 1995 over mushrooming growth of meat shops in the city and both sides torched a few shops and confronted each other. A case was registered against the rioters at Nauchandi police station of Meerut in 1995.

After the investigation, the first charge sheet was submitted against 22 accused and thereafter another supplementary charge sheet was submitted against Ansari, of which the concerned court took cognizance in August 1997.

Because Ansari had not appeared before the court, a non-bailable warrant was issued on December 12, 1997. Afterwards, despite repeated non-bailable warrants (101 in number) and processes under section 82 (proclamation for person absconding) criminal procedure code (CrPC), the applicant did not appear before the trial court.

During the court proceedings, the counsel for Ansari sought quashing of the criminal proceedings against the applicant on the ground that 22 accused, originally charged in the case, had already been acquitted after facing trial, hence, proceedings against him should be quashed.

Rafiq Ansari had filed an application under section 482 (inherent powers of high court) seeking quashing of criminal proceedings pending against him in the criminal case pending before the court of the additional chief judicial magistrate, MP/MLA, Meerut.

As per the MLA’s lawyer, his client approached the then Samajwadi Party government in the state in 2014 urging withdrawal of case against him. As per lawyer Dixit, the then state government agreed and the then public prosecutor moved an application in the MP/ MLA court of Meerut in 2016 but the court didn’t accept it.

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