MN Singh was joint commissioner of police (Crime) and head of the SIT investigating the 1993 serial blast for which Sanjay Dutt was convicted. Singh spoke to HT on Wednesday, a day before Dutt was released from Jail.
Sanjay Dutt received 3 AK 56 rifles from members of the Dawood gang and during the questioning of arrested accused, his name cropped up in the 1993 blasts investigations. Later on he had dispersed and given the weapons to friends to be destroyed but police found them and arrested him. There was pressure on the police but it was not possible to show leniency as the crime was of serious nature and the government and the police stood its ground. There were others like him who were also arrested and TADA had clear defined sections in which keeping contraband arms in notified territory meant TADA had to be invoked.
And after a thorough investigation, Sanjay Dutt was convicted under arms act and under the TADA charge he was acquitted. In fact, out of the 123 who faced trial, 100 were convicted by the court. His father Sunil Dutt was a gentleman and went to a lot of people and also came to me, he told everybody that Sanjay was not a criminal and had just made a mistake. But the weapons with Sanjay Dutt were assault weapons and not weapons of defence. In fact, the ISI and Dawood Ibrahim gang were involved in the 1993 serial blasts case and the weapons came in ship loads. The blasts have a background and they were after the 1992 riots which broke out in the wake of Babri masjid demolition and were planned to take revenge.
It has finally ended, the government has taken a conscious decision to release him and Dutt was punished for keeping the wrong company and irresponsible behaviour. Even during the investigations he did not show bad behaviour and this sensible and humble behaviour has got him through.