Medical witness in Salman hit & run seeks police cover

Mumbai: The doctor who collected actor Salman Khan’s blood sample following the Bandra hit and run, on Monday sought police protection till the next hearing. After he made an oral plea for the same, the Sessions Court asked him to submit a written application. However, he did not give any reason for the request.

Dr Suhas Pawar from JJ Hospital had collected Salman’s blood after his car ploughed into pavement dwellers in Bandra killing one and injuring four others on September 28, 2002.

Special Public Prosecutor Pradeep Gharat requested for protection on behalf of the doctor. “Dr. Suhas Pawar has asked for a constable till the next hearing. The court has asked him to give a written application but he said he will not give a written application and only prayed for security,” Gharat said.

Meanwhile, senior Advocate Abha Singh, who is an intervener in the case, said a witness asking for police protection was a serious matter. “An inquiry should be instituted and if the truth is found, Salman Khan’s bail should be rejected,” she said.

“The Code of Criminal Procedure clearly says that if any witness is influenced, then in that case, the bail can be cancelled,” Singh added.

On January 22, two key witnesses, Dr Pawar and police constable Dilip Mane, will be examined.

The actor had earlier been tried by a magistrate for a lesser offence of causing death by negligence, which entails maximum imprisonment of two years. However, after a fresh trial was ordered, the actor is being tried for culpable homicide not amounting to murder that attracts maximum of 10-year sentence.

The hit-and-run case on Monday did not kick start as Advocate Shrikant Shivade, lawyer for the actor, had not come due to ill-health and the matter was simply adjourned for January 22.

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