The Delhi Police, in its chargesheet filed against Uphaar fire convict Sushil Ansal, has said he misled government authorities while getting his passport renewed, by saying he has not been convicted in any criminal proceedings.
The chargesheet, filed before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pankaj Sharma at Patiala House court, states that Ansal “deliberately concealed the information regarding criminal proceedings pending against applicant in any court of law for any criminal offence in the past”.
Ansal was convicted in the Uphaar fire case in 2007. Fifty-nine lives were lost in the cinema blaze.
As per court records, the ‘association of victims of Uphaar fire tragedy’ filed a writ petition before the Delhi High Court, and during a hearing it emerged that Ansal had procured a passport in 2000, 2004 and 2013, and suppressed facts while applying for it.
In 2013, when he again applied for the passport, he produced an affidavit on oath stating that no criminal proceedings were pending against him nor had he been convicted of any crime in the past. It also emerged that in the police verification report, police officials had mentioned that there were no criminal cases pending against Ansal, and it was “wrongly mentioned” that he did not travel abroad.
Police also told the court that from the investigation of the material on record, it transpired that the facts related to registration of FIR, transfer of the case to CBI and subsequent conviction “have not been received by Delhi Police, and therefore is not reflected in the Home Police Station record”.
“The name of Sushil Ansal is neither reflected in the records of police station Tilak Marg, nor in the State Crime Bureau data,” the chargesheet read.
Police said that Ansal was issued a passport in 2013 on Tatkal application, which required his deposition to the effect that there were no criminal proceedings against him.
“He has on oath misled the Government Authority (RPO) that he has not been convicted in any criminal proceedings by any court,” the chargesheet read.
Police gave a clean chit to the policeman who conducted the passport verification, sub-inspector Kartar Singh, stating that “no evidence came on record against the then SI… as he carried out the verification as per laid down procedure”.
Police said that SI Singh verified the records from SCRB records and the local police station. Due to the fact that Ansal had changed his address, no record was found of him at the time, police told the court.
It was stated that the passport was issued to Ansal since no adverse report was received from the Special Branch of Delhi Police as he had changed his address and concealed his conviction in his passport application form.
The Supreme Court had in 2017 asked Gopal Ansal, who was also convicted in the case, to undergo the remaining one-year jail term in the case, while his elder brother, Sushil, got relief from incarceration with a prison term already undergone by him in view of age-related complications.