Indian court delays sentencing Sanjay Dutt
INDIA: An Indian anti-terror court on Tuesday delayed its sentencing
of Bollywood film star Sanjay Dutt following a legal challenge by others
convicted in connection with a series of bombings in Mumbai in 1993.
Bollywoodâ€™s favourite bad guy had been in court to hear whether he
will be jailed for illegal weapons possession, but his lawyer told AFP
the sentencing would now likely take place today or early next week.
The special anti-terror court has already sentenced 76 of the 100
people found guilty in connection with the â€śBlack Fridayâ€ť attacks, which
were allegedly organised by Mumbaiâ€™s Muslim-dominated underworld in
revenge for deadly Hindu-Muslim religious clashes a few months earlier.
But on Tuesday, 15 people who have been found guilty of planting 13
bombs across Indiaâ€™s financial capital in March 1993 argued that the
anti-terror court did not have jurisdiction to decide sentencing.
Their lawyers said the Terrorists and Disruptive Activities Act â€”
under which the court was set up â€” had been repealed years ago. They are
likely to appeal to Indiaâ€™s Supreme Court.
Dutt was found guilty of possessing weapons, but was cleared of the
more serious charge of conspiracy in the attacks, in which 257 people
The alleged masterminds of the blasts, Dawood Ibrahim and Tiger Memon,
have been on the run since 1993. Indian investigators say they were
aided by Pakistanâ€™s intelligence service but Islamabad has denied any
link. In recent weeks, Dutt has been filming nonstop to close out his
existing movie contracts prior to the sentencing.
â€śI spend my evenings playing with my four-month-old nephew and
chatting with friends. I plan to start work on another film very soon,â€ť
the burly actor told AFP at the weekend.
With about six movies in production and as much as 750 million rupees
(18 million dollars) of Bollywood money riding on Duttâ€™s fate, several
producers are nervously awaiting the sentencing.
Mumbai, Wednesday, AFP