File affidavit on Dutt's furlough, petitioner told

Written By Unknown on Selasa, 03 Februari 2015 | 22.23

MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Monday directed a city advocate to file an affidavit within a week to bring on record subsequent developments regarding Sanjay Dutt's recent leave on furlough allegedly against existing rules.

The direction came on a PIL filed by the lawyer against the frequent prison leaves granted to Dutt last year.

The PIL had sought directions to Maharashtra to revamp its furlough and parole laws. Last year the HC had directed the state to set up a committee to look into it.

A bench headed by Justice V M Kanade directed the state to file its reply in two weeks and said it would then hear after three weeks the lawyer's plea for an inquiry against prison authorities.

Nikhil Chaudhari, representing the petitioner, claimed that Dutt's recent two-week furlough was illegal as according to a prison rule, he had not completed an "actual year-long imprisonment" prior to the leave being granted.

In May 2013, Dutt had surrendered to serve the remainder of his five-year imprisonment after the Supreme Court upheld his conviction under the Arms Act for possession of an AK-56 rifle at his Bandra home prior to the 1993 serial blasts in the city.

Within five months he applied for furlough, a discretionary leave to maintain contact with family and society, and it was granted for a month. In December 2013, he then sought parole for his wife's illness and got it for three months, including two extensions, a period which is not counted as time served in jail, said Chaudhari.

The bench asked Chaudhari if he was interested in the actor or the law. Justice Kanade said the HC would "examine" his contentions. But agreeing with the state lawyer, S Shinde, that the petitioner ought to place his plea on an affidavit and not verbally in court, the HC directed that the affidavit be filed.

Shinde said that after the HC order last year, a committee had been formed and it last met a fortnight ago. Shinde said he would find out what had transpired in the meeting and would update the court at the next hearing. Dutt,Justice V M Kanade,Bombay high court

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