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Home > News > PTI

Salem, Dutt come face to face in TADA court

December 09, 2005 12:48 IST
Last Updated: December 09, 2005 19:46 IST

In keeping with the judicial directive, actor Sanjay Dutt and 84 other accused in 1993 bomb blasts case on Friday appeared before a Terrorist And Disruptive Activities (Prevention Act)court even as the Central Bureau of Investigation produced extradited gangster Abu Salem before the court.

The court had summoned all the blast accused to appear for amending charges filed against Salem. Thirty other accused lodged in Central Prison were also produced before the court.

The court had ordered the CBI to produce Salem, as he was earlier shown as 'absconding accused' in the chargesheet filed by CBI in 1993. As Salem has been extradited to India from Portugal, the chargesheet has to be amended accordingly.

In an exercise that may last the entire day, the court willask all accused, individually, whether they have any objection to the amendment of charges in this regard.

This isthe first time that Salem and Duttcame face to facein the TADA court.

Salem is charged with supplying arms and ammunition, including an AK-56 rifle, to co-accused Dutt before the 1993
blasts. Dutt has denied the charges and the witnesses produced against him have also turned hostile.

However, Salem has reportedly confessed his role in the blasts to the CBI but contents of his confession have not been made public, although confession has been placed before the court.

Complete coverage: Abu Salem's extradition

Some of the accused said they were curious to know if Salem would be tried separately, since they did not want the blast case trial judgement to get delayed further.

The judge said he had discussed the matter with their lawyers, and if they have any objections, they might raise it through their lawyers.

All through the one-and-half-hour long proceedings in the TADA court, Salem glimpsed through the accused seated in the court, occasionally giving a smile to some of them.

Actor Sanjay Dutt came out of the courtroom once during the proceedings, but neither he nor Salem had any eye-to-eye contact.

After the proceedings were over, some of accused in the case had a brief chat with Salem inside the court premises, while many shook hands with him, before he was whisked away from the accused under a police security cover.

Later, actor Sanjay Dutt refused to answer to queries of reporters on the Salem issue, whether he knew Salem was in the court and if he had talked to him.

"I do not wish to talk on any of these issues," he said.

One of the charges extradited gangster Abu Salem faces in the 1993 bomb blasts case is allegedly supplying an AK-56 rifle to Sanjay Dutt at the latter's house.

Although the actor confessed to this in a confessional statement, he subsequently retracted from having admitted any such fact.

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