Prosecutor J V Kendralkar informed the court that the prosecution has sent a letter to the Law and Judiciary department in this regard for seeking permission to file an appeal in the high court.
As the department’s response was still awaited, the state sought time. However, Salman’s lawyer Srikant Shivade urged for commencement of a fresh trial and pleaded the court to give a short date to the state for adjournment of the case.
Judge D W Deshpande then adjourned the case to January 21 and asked the prosecution to seek instructions from the state on filing the appeal in the High Court.
The prosecution has contended in the letter written by it to the government that the judge had erred in holding a fresh trial. “There was no provision in law to hold a fresh trial and the evidence adduced in a court could not be discarded,” the letter read. It was argued by the prosecution that it would be difficult for them to trace all the witnesses and re-examine them. In the eyes of law, the evidence recorded earlier in this case by a magistrate cannot be discarded and may be used in the trial.
A Mumbai session court on December 5 had ordered a fresh trial pointing out that witnesses had not been examined in the context of aggravated charge of culpable homicide, which was invoked against the actor midway through the proceedings. Earlier, Salman had been tried by a magistrate for offence of causing death by negligence, which entailed an imprisonment of two years. The charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder attracts a 10-year sentence.
On September 28, 2002, a Toyota Land Cruiser allegedly driven by Salman, had crushed a group of people sleeping on a pavement outside a bakery in suburban Bandra, killing one and injuring four.