In what could spell trouble for Bollywood star Salman Khan, the family of the victim who was crushed under the wheels of the actor’s sports utility vehicle in 2002 has approached the Supreme Court for his conviction.
Shaikh Noorulla Shafik’s son and wife have challenged the Bombay HC judgment acquitting the actor in the hit-and-run accident. If the SC finds Salman guilty, the family wants him to compensate them. The accident led to the loss of the sole breadwinner in the family, the petitioners said, blaming the actor for rendering them “destitute” and “hopeless”.
In their petition filed through advocate Vipin Nair, Noorulla’s family criticised the HC’s decision to give Salman a clean chit. The HC erred in discarding the statement of the actor’s bodyguard, Ravindra Himmatrao Patil, recorded before the metropolitan magistrate, complained the petitioners.
The appeal is likely to come up for hearing on February 12 when a bench headed by Justice JS Khehar will hear the Maharashtra government’s challenge to the HC verdict. In the last hearing, attorney general Mukul Rohatgi had maintained the actor’s acquittal was a travesty of justice and criticised him for allegedly fleeing after the accident.
Patil’s version before the magistrate supported the police case that Salman was in the driver’s seat. But Patil could not appear before a higher court - sessions judge – when the court was transferred after the magistrate ruled the actor had committed a heinous offence.