MUMBAI: A sessions court will today hear the appeal filed by Bollywood superstar Salman Khan against a magistrate’s ruling invoking the charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder with regard to the 2002 hit-and-run case.
The appeal was initially to be heard on 10 June, 2013, but was postponed to 24 June by the sessions court because not many court staff turned up due to the heavy rains.
The homicide angle to the hit-and-run case was a recent addition. Earlier, Salman Khan was tried by a magistrate under the lesser charge of causing death by negligence (Section 304A of IPC) under which Salman Khan was liable for a maximum imprisonment of two years.
However, this story was not done yet as the metropolitan magistrate examined 17 more witnesses and brought forth the more serious charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder and transferred it back to a sessions court for re-trial. Salman Khan could be imprisoned for a maximum ten years under this charge and is triable by a sessions court.
Salman Khan’s lawyer Ashok Mundargi has filed written submissions on the appeal and has made oral arguments too. Ashok Mundargi claimed that the magistrate’s order was “erroneous, bad in law and contrary to evidence on record.”
Ashok Mundargi contended that the magistrate has failed to recognise that his client, Salman Khan, had neither the intention to kill people nor the knowledge that his rash and negligent driving would kill a person and injure four others.
On the other hand, Public Prosecutor Shankar Erande upheld the magistrate’s decision to press charges of culpable homicide as he felt Salman Khan had committed a serious offence.
Now to wait and watch what the sessions court decision in this case will be.