The Congress was a relieved lot after the TADA court acquitted film star Sanjay Dutt of conspiracy and terrorism charges in the Mumbai serial blasts.
"It's a great relief to me and my party as Sanjay, who is a member of the Congress family, has been convicted for a minor offence," said Mumbai Region Congress Committee president and Parliament member Gurudas Kamat.
"Sanjay's father and mother were active part workers. His sister Priya represents the part in the Lok Sabha. So, it's great news."
Kamat had said on Monday that adverse verdict against Sanjay would not affect Priya's political profile due to mass appeal of her family.
But sources said Sanjay's conviction for terrorist activity would certainly have embarrassed the party and family.
In fact, it is Sanjay's arrest under TADA that had prompted his father Sunil Dutt to skip one of the Lok Sabha elections. But he won the next polls with thumping margins. Even Priya romped home handsomely while the allegations against Sanjay were everywhere.
However, the acquittal from grave charge is expected to give the party a new edge.
"I feel vindicated today," an elated Priya said. "The tag of a terrorist and charges under the TADA have been removed from him today," Priya told reporters.
"From feeling like an accused for the last 13 years to today's verdict has been a long journey. Today, he is free from all that," Priya said.