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Salman Khan hit-and-run case: Bandra cops to submit report on bribery complaint of witness

Muslim Sheikh alleged that his former lawyer offered him Rs 5 lakh to turn hostile in the case

The Bandra police will submit their report in court today on their investigations into a complaint by a witness in the 2002 Salman Khan hit-and-run case.

Also read: Salman hit-and-run case: Eye-witness offered Rs 5 lakh to change statement

Salman Khan is being re-tried in the 2002 hit-and-run case, after charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder were levelled against him. File pic
Salman Khan is being re-tried in the 2002 hit-and-run case, after charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder were levelled against him. File pic

In his complaint, Muslim Niyamat Sheikh one of the four people injured when the actor’s car rammed into the American Express Bakery in Bandra has alleged that his former lawyer Mukesh Pandey offered him a bribe of Rs 5 lakh to reverse his testimony in the case. 

Also read: Mumbai police's 'VIP' treatment to Salman Khan leaves media fuming

mid-day’s May 7 report on Sheikh’s bribery complaint
mid-day’s May 7 report on Sheikh’s bribery complaint

mid-day had reported on Sheikh’s complaint on May 7. He alleged he had received two phone calls he was offered the money in the first one, and he didn’t answer the second.

Also read: 2002 hit and run case: Salman Khan identified by two witnesses in court

The court then ordered the Bandra police to submit a report in the next hearing, which is today. Based on the report, the court will decide whether to admit the plaint. Sheikh and two others testified on May 6, saying they had seen the actor get down from his Toyota Land Cruiser after the accident on Hill Road that killed one.

Sheikh is the youngest eyewitness in the case he was 16 when the accident occurred on September 28, 2002. He was admitted to Bhabha Hospital for three months. He now stays in UP, and only comes to Mumbai when the court summons him.

Police sources said they have taken Pandey’s statement four pages long in which he has denied the accusation. However, he accepted that several calls were exchanged between him and Sheikh. He told cops that since Sheikh stays in UP, he calls him up before every hearing.

Police had traced the number from which Sheikh received the calls to Pandey, and call records prove there was an exchange of calls. But since there are no recordings of the conversation, proving the allegation would be difficult, and Pandey would likely get a clean chit, sources said.

Pandey is said to have been instrumental in helping the victims, including Sheikh, get compensation. He also reportedly helped them open bank accounts and stood guarantee for them.

When contacted, Advocate Mukesh Pandey said, “Muslim is lying. There was no call made from my phone to his number on the day he is claiming an unknown person called. “In fact, he was the one to call me every now then, asking, ‘Sir, main phans toh nahi jaunga naa case mein’. I remember one day I had 13 missed calls from him.

I have been his lawyer for 10 years. How can he make such claims? I have recorded my statement with the police, along with some documents.” Asked if he’d be present in court on Monday, he said, “Why should I? The Bandra police is supposed to submit the report. I am not required to be in court.”

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