Governor Junks Plea to Cancel Sanjay Dutta’s Jail Term

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Mumbai: Maharashtra Governor Chennamaneni Vidyasagar Rao has rejected a plea to waive the remaining prison term of actor Sanjay Dutta, convicted in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case for procuring illegal weapons.

“While turning down the plea for pardon, the Governor followed the advice of home department which had recommended him that the plea for pardon be turned down as Dutt had been convicted by the highest (Supreme) court. It was felt that granting him pardon would set a bad precedent,” an official said.

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Dutt, 56, is due to walk out a free man in January next year.

The petition to cancel Dutt’s remaining jail term was submitted by former Supreme Court judge Markandey Katju, who had argued that Dutt was “not a terrorist” and had only erred.

Dutt was jailed in 1996 and spent 18 months behind bars before walking out on bail.

In 2013, the Supreme Court sentenced him to five years in prison for procuring prohibited weapons from persons who were convicted for the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai in which 257 people were killed.

The 18 months that Dutt had earlier spent in jail were taken into account and he was to spend another 42 months.

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