In a major relief for Bollywood superstar Salman Khan, the Bombay High Court on Friday suspended his five-year jail sentence, paving the way for him to apply for and seek a regular bail.
Special public prosecutor Pradeep Gharat said the Bombay High Court has directed Salman to furnish a fresh bail bond of Rs.30,000 to the Mumbai Sessions Court.
The interim bail granted to the actor by the high court two days ago has been extended and he will not be taken into custody pending disposal of his appeal against the lower court judgment, Gharat told media persons.
While granting the relief, Justice A.M. Thipsay at the high court asked Salman to surrender his passport and apply for permission whenever required to travel abroad.
Among other things, Justice Thipsay observed that there is no possibility of Salman absconding if granted bail.
In nearly two hours of arguments before the high court, Salman’s lawyers led by renowned advocate Amit Desai said the prosecution had failed to examine singer Kamaal Khan as a witness, the defence did not get opportunity to cross-examine the deceased police bodyguard of Salman, Ravindra Patil, and that the accident was caused due to a tyre burst of the Toyota Land Cruiser that early morning of September 28, 2002.
Scores of Salman’s fans had gathered outside his Bandra residence and the high court since early morning and as soon as the news of suspension of his sentence spread they erupted in joy. Several of them broke into a jig carrying others on shoulders.
As Salman left for the trial court to execute a fresh bail bond, a large number of fans were seen running after the convoy.
On Wednesday, Additional Sessions Judge D.W. Deshpande found the actor guilty on all charges pertaining to the accident and later sentenced him to five years jail plus Rs.25,000 fine.
On Thursday, the B town celebs who are close friends of Salman were spotted at his Bandra Galaxy apartment from morning onwards.
Veteran actress Waheeda Rehman, who is one of the most reserved actresses in the showbiz, was spotted at Salman’s residence. The other celebrities included Aamir Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Amrita Arora, Govinda, and Sanjay Kapoor.