New Delhi: The Uttar Pradesh government has declared Samajwadi Party MP and former Uttar Pradesh Minister Azam Khan a ‘land mafia’. The development comes after 13 FIRs were lodged against him on land-grabbing charges.

Besides Khan, the name of Alay Hasan Khan, a former circle officer in Rampur was also put on the same list. Speaking to a news agency, Rampur District Magistrate Aujaneya Kumar Singh confirmed that the two accused had been named as land mafia.

“As many as 26 farmers had claimed that Azam Khan and his close aide Alay Hasan Khan acquired their land for the Mohammad Ali Jauhar University through coercion,” the DM said.

Calling it a conspiracy hatched by the Rampur District Magistrate,  Khan said,”My name was put up on the portal just on the basis of FIRs without conducting any preliminary inquiries. Most of the FIRs were registered within hours and this shows how the law was misused for political vendetta,” he stated.

“Most of the complainants had already filed their apologies on affidavits before the courts also but now the administrative officials have lured them and fooled them to file an FIR against Azam Khan because he is very affluent and wealthy and they will get the handsome amount from him,” he said.

Furthermore, he added,”I have full faith in the judiciary of my country and I will produce each and every evidence supporting my claims before the court. We have got sale deeds registered and payments were made through cheques.”

Extending support to Khan, SP MLAs said they will stage a protest demanding the state to withdraw the cases registered against the senior party leader and his family members in Rampur. “All the SP MLAs will protest again, this time before the Speaker inside the Assembly on Friday,” SP MLA from Moradabad Dehat constituency, Haji Iqram Qureshi, told IANS.