During the virtual hearing in the poaching case of two blackbucks in 1998 earlier on Wednesday, Bollywood star Salman Khan on Tuesday apologised for ‘mistakenly’ submitting a fake affidavit to the Jodhpur session Court in 2003. The concluding verdict within the case shall be pronounced by the court on Thursday.
The Bollywood star had earlier appeared before the Jodhpur session court for the hearing of his plea at odds with the conviction in the blackbuck poaching case on video conferencing. The affidavit said that Salman had lost the licence documents for his weapons despite the fact that the weapon was sent for renewal. Salman’s lawyer Hastimal Saraswat pleaded before the court that for the affidavit that the actor submitted mistakenly to the court on August 8, 2003, he should be forgiven.
During the listening, the actor’s lawyer informed, “The affidavit was mistakenly given on August 8, 2003, as Salman Khan had forgotten that his licence was given for renewal because he was too busy. Hence, he mentioned in the court that the licence had gone missing.”
The poaching case goes back to September 1998, when Salman Khan along with Tabu, Neelam, Saif Ali Khan, and Sonali Bendre, allegedly hunted down two blackbucks in the Kankani village of Rajasthan. Later in October 1998, the Bishnoi villagers had registered a complaint against this ‘Hum Saath-Saath Hain’ clan, alleging the case of killing and poaching.
At that time, a Firearms Act case was also registered against Salman Khan for possessing and using firearms with an expired license and the court had asked him to present his firearms licence. He had submitted the affidavit back then stating that he had lost his license. However, the court later learned that Salman Khan’s licence was not lost but was submitted for renewal. Public prosecutor Bhavani Singh Bhati had then insisted that a case of misleading the court should be filed against the Judwa actor.
It may be pointed out that in 2018, a trial court had awarded five-year imprisonment to Salman Khan regarding the poaching case, which he challenged later. The fellow actor Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, Neelam and Sonali Bendre, who were present on the spot in Kankani along with him, have been exculpated. Though, Salman was acquitted in the 1998 Arms Act case by the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate of Jodhpur district in 2017.
Salman Khan’s lawyer, Hastimal Saraswat, in a conversation with media said that the former didn’t have any intention of submitting a false affidavit or to provide any wrong or misleading information regarding his licence. Saraswat also informed the media that after the hearing, the court has dismissed related charges against Salman Khan.
The Bhai of Bollywood has had a history of court cases against him and his legal troubles don’t seem to end. He also was the face of the infamous 2002 hit and run case where he had been booked under provisions of IPC, Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949, for the homicide of a person and injuring of 3 persons on the pavements near American Express Bakery at Hill Road at Bandra. After a series of hearings and trials, he was acquitted of all charges in 2015.
They say, ‘justice delayed is justice denied.’ Do you think that Salman Khan was innocent all this while or had the money and influence took its course?