Allahabad HC rejects contempt petition against Mayawati

Allahabad HC on Friday dismissed a contempt petition filed against UP CM Mayawati over a speech made by her at an election rally where she had reportedly spoken in favour of don-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari.

Last Updated: Oct 22, 2010, 19:11 PM IST

Allahabad: The Allahabad High Court on Friday
dismissed a contempt petition filed against Uttar Pradesh
Chief Minister Mayawati over a speech made by her at an
election rally where she had reportedly spoken in favour of
don-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari and his brother Afzal.

The Ansari brothers are prime accused in BJP MLA
Krishnanand Rai murder case and were fielded by Mayawati-led
BSP in the Lok Sabha polls last year.
A Division Bench comprising Justice Vinod Prasad and
Justice Y C Gupta dismissed the petition filed by Alka Rai,
the slain BJP legislator`s wife, observing "we do not find it
a fit case to exercise our suo motu power to draw a proceeding
for criminal proceeding against respondent Ms Mayawati".

"The permission has already been refused by learned
Advocate General for initiating criminal contempt proceedings
against her (Mayawati) and therefore, the present criminal
contempt petition, being devoid of substance, is hereby
dismissed", the court remarked.

Rai had filed the contempt petition alleging that on
April 12, 2009, at an election rally in Ghazipur from where
Afzal Ansari was the BSP candidate, Mayawati had said he and
Mukhtar, who was contesting from Varanasi, had been "falsely
implicated" in the murder case of Krishnanand Rai by the
previous Samajwadi Party government in the state.

Rai was gunned down in Ghazipur on November 29, 2005,
when Afzal was a Member of Parliament belonging to Samajwadi
Party, which was in power in the state at that time, while
Mukhtar was an Independent MLA from Mau known to be close to
the ruling political group.
The petitioner had moved the court with the contention
that Mayawati`s reported speech "scandalises and lowers the
dignity of the court" and "interferes or tends to intefere
with due course of judicial proceeding".

However, the court noted that the Advocate General, while
refusing to grant permission for initiating criminal
proceedings against Mayawati, "has taken into consideration
the fact that the statement alleged to have been made by the
respondent opposite party, does not amount to scandalisation
of the court nor does it interfere or tends to interfere with
due course of judicial proceedings".

Moreover, the court remarked, "such a speech which is
capable of two interpretations cannot be a subject matter of
criminal contempt and we say no more".

PTI