Mumbai: The Bombay high court today sought to know from the Maharashtra government what measures it had taken to prevent drunk driving cases after the accident involving Bollywood actor Salman Khan in 2002.
Justices Abhay Oka and A S Chandurkar were hearing a public interest litigation filed by journalist Nikhil Wagle seeking compensation for the victims and their families.
Khan’s vehicle had allegedly rammed into a bakery at suburban Bandra on September 28, 2002, killing one person and injuring four others. A sessions court is currently trying the actor in this case.
During the hearing of this PIL on October 7, 2002, the then Attorney General (AG) Goolam Vahanvati had assured the court that he will personally ensure that constructive measures were taken by the Government to prevent drunk driving mishaps.
The high court had then asked the government to file an affidavit to the effect. However, till date no affidavit has been filed.
Justice Oka today asked the government why it had not filed the affidavit.
“More than 11 years have lapsed since the then AG made a statement. However, no affidavit has been filed as yet,” observed justice Oka.
In 2002, the HC had directed the actor to pay interim compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the person who was killed in the mishap. He was also asked to pay Rs 3 lakh to the seriously injured and Rs 1.5 lakh to the presons who sustained simple injuries in the accident.
Accordingly, the actor had deposited the money with the court.
The court was informed that Firoz, son of the deceased Noorula, had filed application in 2002, that the compensation money should not be given to his mother since she had re-married. The compensation amount should be given to his grand mother, said Firoz’s application.
The HC today asked Registrar (Judicial) to submit a report on whether any money had been withdrawn by the victims or their families, while adjourning the PIL to August 1.