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Supreme Court grants Sanjay Dutt, 5 others interim bail
August 20, 2007 12:25 IST
Last Updated: August 20, 2007 14:53 IST
The Supreme Court on Monday granted interim bail to Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt [Images], who has been sentenced to six years imprisonment by the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act court in connection with the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case.
A Bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan enlarged Dutt on bail till the TADA court in Mumbai provides him with a copy of the judgment.
The Bench said immediately after getting the copy of the judgment, the Bollywood actor will have to surrender.
The court also said that Dutt will also have to appear once in a week before the nearest local police station.
After getting the copy of the judgment, Dutt can apply for regular bail.
While providing relief to Dutt, the court took into consideration that he was on bail since October 16, 1995, till July 31, 2007, the day, he was sentenced to six-year jail term.
The court said that the passport of Dutt will remain with the trial court and he will not leave the country without its permission.
The court also granted interim bail to Sameer Hingora, Aziz Ahmed Mohammad Ahmed Sheikh, Ibrahim Musa Chauhan alias Baba Chauhan, Yusuf Mohsin Nulwalla and a woman convict, Zaibunnisa Anwar Kazi.
The court granted them bail while laying down the same conditions as put forth to Dutt.
The apex court also directed that the petitioners shall be restored to their pre-conviction stage, which means they will be released from jail if they were on bail at the time of their conviction.
The court directed the six petitioners to report to the Central Bureau of Investigation office every Sunday and Aziz Ahmed to withdraw his petition seeking a claim of Rs 25 lakh while telling his counsel that serious charges remain against him and no compensation could be given under such cases.
Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam earlier submitted before the court that the CBI was not willing to create the impression that it was favouring anyone, but sought to classify the petitioners on the basis of the gravity of their offences such as major ones under TADA, minor offences under TADA and conviction under the Arms Act.
The court, however, made it clear that it could not consider the petitions on merit basis since copies of the detailed judgment were not yet available.
The court also refused to adhere to the request of the counsel for the petitioners that they be granted at least a week's time to surrender after the copies of the detailed judgment are received and made it clear that each one of them would have to surrender immediately after getting the copy of the trial court order.
Subramaniam earlier submitted before the court that many people were killed and injured in the serial bomb blasts, which took place in Mumbai on March 12, 1993.
In all, 123 accused were put on trial and dons like Dawood Ibrahim [Images] and Saudi Arabia-based Memon brothers were declared proclaimed offenders (absconders) in the case. About a dozen persons have been awarded capital punishment in the case.
Additional Reportage: UNI