ED attaches assets belonging to Mukhtar Ansari and others

Mafia-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari at a court in Mau in September 2022. (PTI Photo) (PTI09_15_2022_000119A)
| Photo Credit: PTI

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has provisionally attached properties estimated to be ₹73.43 lakh under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against former Uttar Pradesh MLA Mukhtar Ansari and others, said the agency on Saturday. The ED alleged that Ansari usurped government land and built a warehouse on it and later rented the warehouse to Food Corporation of India Limited (FCI).

The attached properties include a land measuring 1,538 sq. ft. in Ghazipur district of Uttar Pradesh and a commercial building constructed over it; and another plot of land measuring 6,020 sq. ft. in Mau.

“These properties were acquired by Abbas Ansari at undervalued consideration of ₹71.94 lakh as against the government rate of ₹6.23 crore. In addition, ₹1.5 lakh in form of balance lying in the bank account of Mukhtar Ansari has also been provisionally attached,” said the agency on Saturday.

The ED probe is based on multiple First Information Reports (FIRs) registered by the Uttar Pradesh police against Ansari and his aides. As alleged, he and his family members had usurped government land and built a warehouse over it. The warehouse was hired on rent by the Food Corporation of India Limited and rent was paid to his family members.

The agency had earlier attached seven immovable properties having book value ₹1.5 crore, in the form of land parcels in Mau and Jalaun (Uttar Pradesh) belonging to Mr. Ansari’s wife Afshan Ansari, and Vikas Construction, a firm controlled by him and his relatives. The attachment order was confirmed by the Adjudicating Authority under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The ED has so far arrested Mr. Ansari, his son Abbas Ansari, sitting MLA from Mau Sadar constituency, and Ansari’s brother-in-law Atif Raza in the case. They are currently in judicial custody. “Prosecution complaints against these three persons have been filed before the Special PMLA court which has taken cognisance of the same,” the agency said.