Sanjay Dutt's early release: Maharashtra govt presents affidavit at Bombay HC

The government in its affidavit has given a division of the duration he had served in jail, excluding the time for which he was on parole and at the end showing that he completed his five years of the term.

By Zee Media Bureau | Updated: Jul 17, 2017, 15:58 PM IST
Sanjay Dutt's early release: Maharashtra govt presents affidavit at Bombay HC

New Delhi: Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt's early release from jail, in the March 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, is lately being questioned by Bombay High Court. And, in order to justify the same, the  Maharashtra state government on Monday reportedly presented an affidavit at the HC.

The government in its affidavit has given a division of the duration he had served in jail, excluding the time for which he was on parole and at the end showing that he completed his five years of the term.

The total parole leave mentioned in the affidavit is four months and furlough leave is one month and 14 days.

The affidavit also mentioned that Dutt was not found guilty of all the other offences for which he was charged and, accordingly, acquitted for all the said offences.

Earlier this month, the HC granted two weeks' time to the state government to file an affidavit to justify its decision to grant Sanjay an early release. Dutt was sentenced to five years in jail for possession of arms, which were part of a consignment used in the blasts that ripped through the city on March 12, 1993, killing as many as 257 people and injuring over 700 others.

The actor, who was on bail during the trial, had surrendered in May 2013 after the Supreme Court upheld his conviction.

Dutt was let out in February 2016, eight months early, on account of his good conduct while in Yerwada prison.

A division bench of Justices R M Savant and Sadhana Jadhav had last month directed the state government to file an affidavit explaining the grounds on which Dutt was granted early remission.

The direction was given on a public interest litigation filed by Pune resident Pradeep Bhalekar, challenging regular paroles and furloughs granted to Dutt when he was serving his sentence.

Additional public prosecutor Prajakta Shinde today told the high court that state Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbhakoni would appear in the matter, and sought time to file the affidavit.

The bench then adjourned the petition for further hearing after two weeks.

The high court had on the last hearing sought to know from the government what parameters were considered and the procedures followed while deciding that Dutt deserved leniency.

During the investigation and the marathon trial, Dutt spent 18 months in jail.

On July 31, 2007, a TADA court in Mumbai sentenced Dutt to six years' rigorous imprisonment under the Arms Act and imposed a fine of Rs 25,000.

In 2013, the Supreme Court upheld the ruling but reduced the sentence to five years following which he surrendered to serve the remainder of his sentence.

During his imprisonment, he was granted parole of 90 days in December 2013 and later for another 30 days.

(With inputs from agencies)