October 17, 1995.
Fourteen months after he was arrested for illegal possession of weapons, Sanjay Dutt [Images], then 36, leaves the Arthur Road jail after being released on bail by the Supreme Court.
It was then the end of a long and lonely journey for the star, who was shocked to find himself abandoned by most of the Bollywood fraternity. ('I was disapppointed by the people of my industry they never stood by me,' he told the Rediff Chat 12 months later. 'I realised that you have just one or two real friends and family is the only one who stands by you in happiness and in problems.'
Only a few Bollywood folk like Shatrughan Sinha, right -- who bucked his Bharatiya Janata Party leadership's command that he not support a man then accused of being a terrorist -- stood by Dutt. Also in the image is Rajendra Kumar, left, the jubilee star of the 1960s and father-in-law of Sanjay's younger sister Namrata.
A year later, Dutt appeared on the Rediff Chat, his first interaction with fans worldwide after his release from prison.
He was casual -- rediff staffers were taken aback by his unstarry manner; he even meekly went out to smoke when one colleague sternly told him that smoking was forbidden in the office -- and candid in his responses.
Read the transcript -- it resonates with poignance ('I thought about my mom all the time when I was in jail, Her thoughts let me struggle for my freedom.'
Photograph: Sebastian D'Souza/AFP/Getty Images
Also read: 'It has taught me to be honest, and true, at all times'