UP mafia story: 3 of 66 mentioned on a police list are now dead, and police are looking for those who are evading capture

LUCKNOW: Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath pledged a crackdown against the mafia after the Uttar Pradesh Police revealed a list of 66 criminal gang leaders last month. To date, three of the listed criminals have been slain, one has been captured, and 38 are currently incarcerated. The police have sent out several squads to find those on the list, even those who are on bail. The anti-gangster task force of the Punjab Police recently detained Harwinder Singh, a close ally of the gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari.Read AlsoUP now land of mahotsavas, not mafia: CM Yogi Adityanath on government anniversaryLUCKNOW: There is a sea change in perception about Uttar Pradesh in the country, and the state, once infamous for mafia, is now known for “mahots “Yeh jo pechaan UP ko di gayi thi – gunda raj, mafiaJailed UP gangster Mukhtar Ansari’s aide nabbed in Punjab’s MohaliJugnu Wala was a criminal wanted by Uttar Pradesh Police, which had also announced a Rs 1-lakh reward for information leading to his arrest, said Punjab director general of police (DGP) Gaurav Yadav.Ringed by cops, jailed gangster Atiq & brother shot dead on way to check-­up in PrayagrajJailed gangster Atiq Ahmed and his brother Ashraf were shot dead at point-blank range by two assailants posing as TV reporters while they were being escorted to a hospital in Prayagraj for a mandatory medical examination under heavy security cover on Saturday night.In UP, people believe in peace & celebration, we don’t want mafia: Yogi AdityanathChief Minister Yogi Adityanth laid the foundation and inaugurated 106 development projects worth Rs 451 crore in Kushinagar district on Wednesday.He was a wanted criminal with a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head, according to Punjab’s director general of police, Gaurav Yadav. Four others on the list remain at large. Atiq Ahmad, who was not on the list, was killed along with his brother in Prayagraj by assailants posing as journalists.04:49Gangster Atiq Ahmad, brother Ashraf shot dead while being taken for medical examination”In a major breakthrough, AGTF arrested Harwinder S@ Jugnu Walia, a close aide of Mukhtar Ansari. Senior Uttar Pradesh Police officials said the government is monitoring all criminals whose names are on the list. “Our teams are on the lookout for the criminals, and if they fire at the police instead of surrendering, they will definitely face retaliation,” a police officer said. He was linked to a number of criminal cases, including murder, attempted murder, extortion, etc., Yadav tweeted. He said many teams have been formed to apprehend the mafia who are evading, and that the police are closely monitoring their activities while they are out on bail. “Nobody will be allowed to play with law and order in the state,” he warned. The mafia list was made public weeks after chief minister Yogi Adityanath promised to take decisive action against such individuals in the state. “Mafiaaon ko mitti me mila denge,” he had thundered in the state assembly during a contentious debate with Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav over the issue of Atiq Ahmad, who was then lodged in a jail in Gujarat. Dujana fired at our team to escape and was killed in retaliatory firing,” Additional Director General of UP STF Amitabh Yash had said. Anil, who carried his village name as his last name, had over 60 cases lodged against him, including of murder and extortion. He was killed just two weeks after mafia-turned-politician Atiq Ahmad and his brother Ashraf were shot dead from point-blank range by threes people as the two brothers alighted a police van and walked towards a hospital, handcuffed and being escorted by policemen, in Prayagraj around 10 pm. On April 12, the Special Task Force gunned down Aditya Rana alias Ravi, who had fled from police custody. Under Additional Director General of Police (ADG) STF Amitabh Yash said police, as part of a special campaign, are looking for criminals declared absconding. During their campaign for the urban local body polls, Chief Minister Adityanath and state ministers are attacking Opposition parties alleging they sheltered such criminals. “BJP ki ek hi yukti, pradesh ko dilai mafia se mukti (The BJP has only one solution which: rid the state of mafia). The mafia are begging for mercy to lead regular lives and earn livelihoods by honest means due to the government’ zero tolerance against crime,” Adityanath had told a poll rally in Rae Bareli. Earlier, criminals in Uttar Pradesh would walk around with their heads held high, but now they carry placards around their necks begging for their lives, he said. He also took a dig at the previous regimes, saying people associated with a particular party would brandish country-made pistols, but they are not seen these days, and youths now are working on smartphones and tablets. One of the listed mafia is Baddan Singh Baddo, who has been absconding for the past four years. He had managed to flee when the police party escorting him back to Farrukhabad jail after a court appearance in Ghaziabad halted at an eatery in Meerut. All the police personnel allegedly got drunk and he took advantage of the situation. The police are yet to arrest Baddo who has cases of murder, loot and ransom registered against him. Last week, absconding mafia Manoj Aase was arrested in Gautam Budh Nagar after an encounter. He was also injured in the exchange of fire. Haji Iqbal alias Bala, a former BSP MLC and mining mafia of Saharanpur, is also absconding and the police have declared a cash reward of Rs 1 lakh on him arrest. His brother and sons are in jail. Others in the list who are out of the police net yet are: Meerut-based Vinay Tyagi and Javed alias Pappu of Prayagraj. Ajay Pratap Singh alias Ajay Sipahi of Ambedkarnagar, Sushil Mooch of Muzaffarnagar, Anoop Singh and Pradeep Singh of Pratapgarh, Sudhir Singh, Rakesh Yadav and Vinod Upadhyay of Gorakhpur, Saud Akhtar of Kanpur, Bachu Yadav of Lucknow, Rajesh Yadav, Kamrul Hasan and Jabir Hussain of Prayagraj are out on bail. Former MLCs Brijesh Singh (of Varanasi) and Sanjeev Dwivedi alias Ramu Dwivedi (of Deoria) are also on bail. Those who are lodged in jail are former MLA Mukhtar Ansari, former MP Rizwan Zaheer, Tribhuvan Singh, Amit Kasana, Sundar Bhati and Subhash Thakur. Officials said the mafia used to operate their network from inside jails, but their confidence has been shaken after the state government crackdown on the nexus between mafia and jail officials. Action has been initiated against jail officials, staff and criminals in several cases including the illegal meeting between Mukhtar Ansari’s son Abbas and his wife in Chitrakoot jail, where Abbas was lodged, and Ashraf’s meeting with people in Bareilly jail.(With inputs from PTI)

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