Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has courted a fresh controversy after it emerged that the lunch hosted by him in the honour of United Progressive Alliance`s (UPA`s) presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee in Lucknow yesterday was attended by two convicted MLAs- Mukhtar Ansari and Vijay Mishra.
Two criminal-turned-politicians, who were the special invitees to the lunch hosted by the UP Chief Minister, are currently in jail for different offences.
Notorious gangster and now politician Ansari, who represents the Kaumi Ekta Dal, is serving a jail sentence on charges of murder and kidnapping, while Mishra, a Samajwadi Party MLA is in jail for murdering a BSP MLA in Allahabad.
The two convicted MLAs attending the Chief Minister’s lunch is a clear violation of law, which states that any jailed legislator only has the right to attend an Assembly session.
After the UP Assembly Session ended on Tuesday afternoon both Ansari and Mishra should have gone back to jail, as per law. However, instead of going back to jail, both lunched at Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav`s residence in total violation of law.
After being caught in an embarrassing situation of seeing convicted MLAs attending a lunch thrown in the honour of its Presidential nominee, the Congress party is trying to distance itself from the controversy.
In his reaction to the development, Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi said, "It`s not as if they were joining the Congress, but they shouldn`t have been allowed."
The state’s youngest Chief Minister yesterday triggered a controversy by allowing MLAs to buy cars costing up to Rs 20 lakh using their Local Area Development fund and by inviting jailed MLAs to a state lunch, he now risks facing a scathing attack by the opposition parties.