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1993 blasts case: Sanjay Dutt files review petition

PTI  Mumbai, April 21, 2013
First Published: 19:19 IST(21/4/2013) | Last Updated: 19:45 IST(21/4/2013)

Days after being granted one more month to surrender, actor Sanjay Dutt has filed a review petition in the Supreme Court challenging his conviction and five-year jail term in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case.

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The review petition against the March 21 judgement of the apex court was filed by 53-year-old Dutt on Friday and is likely to come up for hearing next week, sources said.

Dutt was held guilty by the TADA court in 2007 under the Arms Act for possession of an automatic rifle, but he was acquitted under the stringent TADA (Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act), with the trial judge observing that he was not a "terrorist". The court accepted his confessional statement that he had procured the weapon for self-defence during the riots.

The Supreme Court, on March 21, this year, had dismissed Dutt's appeal, but reduced the prison term to five years from six years.

Dutt had been directed to surrender on April 18, but he sought more time in view his professional commitments. He was granted another four weeks' time by the apex court on "humanitarian grounds".

A Delhi-based legal team of Dutt's has now filed a review petition against the March 21 judgement, the sources said. It contends that the confession made under TADA cannot be treated as evidence for offences under other Acts when the accused has been acquitted under TADA.

The petition has sought reconsideration of the rule laid down in three-bench judgement in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, which held that confession under TADA would be valid for offences under other Acts too. The Supreme Court had relied on this judgement while deciding the appeals filed by convicts of the 1993 blasts case.

Dutt has served 18 months in prison during the trial, and has to undergo a jail term of three-and-a-half years.


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