Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt has made it clear that he had never filed for pardon with the Maharashtra Governor nor had he requested anyone else to do so on his behalf, barely a day after Maharashtra Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao has reportedly rejected a plea filed by former Supreme Court judge Markanday Katju seeking pardon for the actor who was convicted in 1993 Mumbai blasts case under the Arms Act of possessing weapons.
In a statement, the 56-year-old actor’s advocate Hitesh Jain and Subhash Jadhav said the recent articles stating that Maharashtra Governor has turned down the actor’s plea for pardon, are based on an application made by retired Supreme Court Justice Markandey Katju seeking pardon for Dutt and other convicts in the case.
“No such application for grant of pardon was ever made by Sanjay Dutt or his family members to the Governor, seeking pardon. Further, Sanjay Dutt or his family members never approached former Supreme Court Justice Katju for making an application for pardon on behalf of Dutt,” the statement reads. Justice Katju has suo moto made this application for pardon not only for Dutt but also for other convicts in the case like Zaibunissa Kazi, it added.
The statement further said the Munnabhai actor has almost finished his imprisonment and shall be a free man soon. Katju had petitioned Maharashtra Governor Vidyasagar Rao to pardon Dutt as he was “not a terrorist” and had only “erred”.
The Supreme Court had convicted Dutt in 1993 blast case and was imprisoned in 1996 and spent 18 months in the jail before walking out on bail. The apex court, in 2013, sentenced him to five years in prison for the crime taking into account the 18 months that Dutt had earlier spent and he was to spend another 42 months to complete the five year jail term.
The Vaastav actor is currently out on a parole yet again as his daughter was to have a nose surgery. In December last year, he was granted a furlough of 14 days, in December 2013, he was granted parole for 28 days that was extended for another 28 days as his wife was diagnosed with TB, and also in October 2013, when he was granted a furlough of 14 days, which was again extended for another 14 days.