Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann on Thursday said that he has returned the file concerning the clearance of bills worth ₹55 lakh to be paid to lawyers hired by the previous Congress government during Uttar Pradesh gangster Mukhtar Ansari’s stay in the Ropar Central Jail.
In a tweet from his official handle, the CM wrote, “UP’s gangster was kept in Ropar Jail by facilitating him with all possible needs. He was not presented in court even after having warrants issued against him 48 times. Expensive lawyers were hired with expenditure of ₹55 lakh, but I have returned the file regarding clearing this expense from the money collected through people’s taxes.”
The chief minister, who also holds the charge of the jails department, said the government was exploring ways to recover this amount from the ministers during whose tenure the decision to house Ansari in a Punjab jail was made.
Notably, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government had earlier this year marked a probe into the allegations related to Ansari’s stay in Punjab.
The chief minister said for the reasons best known to the previous regimes, this notorious criminal was kept in the Ropar jail with full comforts. Mann said the previous state governments ensured that this hardcore criminal does not face any sort of difficulty inside the prison.
He said the “benevolence of the previous rulers” towards this dangerous criminal can be judged from the fact that though