The news of Bollywood superstar Salman Khan getting convicted and being sentenced to a 5-year jail term in the 1998 blackbuck poaching case, was not taken well by his fans and family. The actor had to spend two nights in prison after being found guilty of killing two rare blackbucks in Jodhpur, during the shooting of his movie ‘Hum Saath Saath Hain’.
Saturday was Salman’s bail hearing and his fans were beside themselves in anticipation to see what the judge’s ruling would be. Judge Ravindra Kumar Joshi, who heard his bail request today, finally granted ‘Dabangg’ Khan bail with a bond of Rs 50,000 and two sureties of Rs. 25,000 each, giving relief to many out there.
The case also involved his co-actors Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, Neelam Kothari and Sonali Bendre, who were acquitted by the Jodhpur sessions court on Thursday.
In the hearing, that took place for almost an hour, the prosecution spoke about the post-mortem report and credibility of the witnesses and also stressed on the post-mortem reports, which emphasised that the blackbucks had gunshot wounds.
However, Salman’s lawyers asserted that only the bones of the animals had been sent for the post-mortem and not the skin, which could make a significant difference. Also, they argued that the witnesses against him were not reliable.
At present, in Rajasthan, the annual reshuffling of judges is taking place, due to which Judge Joshi had put the case on hold as he thoroughly wanted to go through the details before taking a decision. Judge Joshi is being replaced with Chandra Kumar Songara now. Coincidence?
This was the fourth time that the actor was in Jodhpur prison. He has spent a total of 20 days now in the jail, including his stint in 1998, 2006, 2007 and this time.
What’s left to see is how the proceeding of this case will take place and for how long will it be dragged on, before eventually being tossed aside.