After the Jodhpur District and Sessions court on Friday pronounced Bollywood actor Salman Khan guilty in the Chinkara poaching case, the actor evaded immediate arrest.
When an accused is not present in the court and he needs to be taken into custody, the court can either grant him time to surrender or issue a bailable warrant against him. Khan’s lawyer Dipesh Mehta confirmed that the actor has received the arrest warrant. “The warrant is there and we will be filing a revision application before the Rajasthan High Court soon,” he told HT.
The district magistrate and sessions judge issued the non-bailable warrant (NBW) against him for failing to appear before the court after his sentence was upheld. “Once the warrant is issued, the police will have to execute it by arresting Khan. However, the police will have to have a copy of the NBW, which at times could take a few days,” said Satish Borulkar, chief public prosecutor of the Bombay HC. If he is not traceable, then the police have to return to the court and seek a proclamation declaring the actor an absconder. A convict who is not traceable has to be officially declared as an absconder as per the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code, he added.
However, there is legal remedy available for Khan to avoid spending nights behind bars immediately. He can approach the Rajasthan High Court seeking stay on the arrest warrant. Simultaneously, his lawyers can either file a revision application before the sessions court itself or approach the Rajasthan High Court challenging the conviction. Khan could also file for suspension of his sentence and hearing of case on a priority basis. He could also seek bail.
In April 2006, a local Jodhpur court had sentenced the star to five years’ imprisonment after finding him guilty in poaching a Chinkara in 1999 while shooting for Hum Saath Saath Hai.