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Tops cops' mixed response on verdict

Top former Mumbai police officials have reacted in the affirmative on the designated TADA court's judgement on Tuesday on Sanjay Dutt, reports Debasish Panigrahi.

india Updated: Nov 28, 2006 22:08 IST

Top former Mumbai police officials, who were at the helm of the 1993 serial blast investigation, have reacted in the affirmative on the designated TADA court's judgement on Tuesday, pronouncing actor Sanjay Dutt guilty under the Arms Act for illegal possession of fire arm.

However, former Mumbai police commissioner AS Samra appeared intrigued over the absolvement of Dutt from TADA especially when the act clearly barred possession offirearm in a notified area, which Mumbai was, following the riots.

Said Samra, "I am happy on account of the fact that with Dutt's conviction the main issue has been vindicated. By the main issue I mean to say that the court has accepted the fact that Dutt was connected to the underworld and procured arms from those elements. It is shameful that the son of a Member of Parliament had mixed up with anti national elements and possessed illegal arms and explosives in a notified area under the TADA act. I feel really sad about the film industry that instead of ostracising and boycotting such rogues who have underworld connections, they have launched a sentimental and emotional campaign to save him."

YC Pawar, former joint commissioner of police (Law and Order): "I am happy that justice is finally done. Whether under TADA or Arms Act is another story. There are several others too in the case against whom TADA had been dropped. This is primarily because without direct evidence it is difficult to link anyone in the conspiracy. However, the conviction of Dutt in the case, which will remain on record, will make it imperative to seek the court or police's permission as and when he plans to travel abroad."

RD Tyagi, Former Mumbai police commissioner: "The judgement has vindicated the police contention that Dutt possessed an illegal weapon. The legalities (TADA or Arms Act) do not matter much as long as he was pronounced guilty for the offence. It was a stupid act on part of Dutt to keep an illegal weapon and perhaps the court has realised that fact. It may be he just wanted to keep a weapon without any intention to harm anyone. And the fact that he was not found guilty under TADA would mean that the court did not find his complicity in the blast conspiracy. Overall, it is a balanced judgement."

MN Singh, former Mumbai police commissioner: "I am happy that the long wait and the suspense are finally over. I appreciate the fact that Sanjay Dutt is not a terrorist in the conventional sense. But he exhibits an amazing tendency to get on to the wrong side of the law. I hope that he has learnt his lesson and would be careful in the future. The goodwill enjoyed by his late father, his own star status and the sympathy drummed up by the media may have also helped him."

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First Published: Nov 28, 2006 22:08 IST