Gangster Atiq Ahmed and two others were sentenced to life imprisonment after a court in Prayagraj found them guilty in the 2006 Umesh Pal kidnapping case. Seven others, including Atiq Ahmed’s brother Khalid Azim alias Ashraf, have been acquitted in the case.
Ahmed, a former MP and MLA who faces at least 100 criminal cases including murder and kidnapping, was brought from a Gujarat prison to Prayagraj following a 24-hour road journey by the Uttar Pradesh police on Monday.
Ahmed’s conviction comes a month after the sensational murder of Umesh Pal, a key witness in the 2005 murder case of Bahujan Samaj Party MLA Raju Pal.
Umesh Pal was shot dead while he was getting out of the backseat of a Hyundai Creta SUV in Prayagraj on February 24 this year. Two police bodyguards accompanying him were also killed in the shootout.
CCTV footage showed Umesh Pal and one of his two police bodyguards getting out of the SUV when suddenly multiple shooters came from behind and fired at him. Another man could be seen using crude bombs during the assault, which exploded in a cloud of smoke, leading to panic and chaos on the road with people running to safety. Many abandoned their vehicles and ran toward shops.
The UP police have claimed that Atiq Ahmed got Umesh Pal killed as the latter had named him as the key accused in the 2005 murder. In 2006, Umesh Pal had alleged that he was kidnapped at gunpoint when he refused to retract his statement to the police. The court verdict in Prayagraj today has come in the 2006 kidnapping case.
After gangster-politician Atiq Ahmed was sentenced to ‘rigorous’ life sentence by a court in Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj in the 2006 Umesh Pal kidnapping case, Shanti Devi, the victim’s mother expressed dissatisfaction, demanded the death sentence and declared her faith in UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath.