BY ANUJ RADIA

District and Sessions Court Judge Ravindra Kumar Joshi has adjourned Bollywood superstar Salman Khan’s bail hearing in the 1998 blackbuck poaching case on Saturday 7th April 2018.

Senior advocate Mahesh Boda represented Salman’s case in the sessions court.

Alvira and Arpita, Khan’s sisters, were also present in court when the judgement was pronounced whilst Khan himself was locked-up.

Amongst air-tight security, Salman was escorted to the Jodhpur Central Jail where he will spend at least a night in barrack number one.

Earlier, according to Economic Times – the actor’s lawyers (in their defence) claimed that eyewitness accounts were unreliable, and therefore the punishment to the actor is ‘harsh’.

The lawyers had also quoted acquittal in other cases in the 51-page bail plea submitted in court.

The prison which Khan is being held at also houses rape-accused Asaram Bapu, Bhanwari Devi, murder-accused Malkhan Singh Vishnoi and Shambhu Lal Regar, arrested for killing a Muslim and unashamedly filming the act.

This is the fourth time Salman has been sent to Jodhpur jail. He earlier spent 18 days in the jail at different times during 1998, 2006 and 2007 — all accused of poaching cases. Each time though, he was released on bail.

Soon after the verdict yesterday, members of Bishnoi community, who revere the antelope believing that it is a reincarnation of a 600-year-old guru, rejoiced in front of the court.

The Bishnoi community was anguished by the poaching incident and had filed a complaint against the stars, saying they heard gunshots being fired shortly after midnight on October 1, 1998.

This is one of many legal battles Salman has faced in the last 20 years, including allegations of killing a homeless man while driving drunk in Mumbai, a charge he was acquitted of.

He was also booked for keeping a weapon under an expired arms licence. But a trial court had acquitted him.

Further updates to follow.

Image Courtesy of The Sun: AFP or Licensors