Salman's lawyer questions value of police bodyguard's evidence

Mumbai: Bollywood superstar Salman Khan's lawyer today questioned in the Bombay High Court the legal value of the evidence adduced by prosecution about the actor driving his car under the influence of liquor when it met with an accident in September 2002.

Salman Khan
Salman Khan

"Such a piece of evidence should be discarded as it did not have any evidential value," argued advocate Amit Desai in the high court, which is hearing an appeal filed by Salman against the five-year sentence awarded to him by the trial court on May 6.

The actor was held guilty of ramming his car into a bakery in Bandra on September 28, 2002, killing one person and injuring four others who were sleeping outside on the pavement.

During the trial, the prosecution relied only on the evidence of Ravindra Patil, the then police bodyguard of Salman, who passed away in 2007, Desai said.

Patil had lodged FIR on the day of the mishap but didn't mention that Salman was driving and was drunk. He mentioned this only two days later before the magistrate, when he said Salman had taken drinks on that evening, and he had asked the actor to drive slow.

Desai referred to Patil's cross-examination before the magistrate during the earlier trial in 2007, when he had admitted to being silent on these aspects in the FIR.

So his statement before the magistrate implicating Salman does not have any evidential value, Desai argued.

The actor is currently out on bail. Arguments would continue tomorrow.

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