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Salman denies he was driving or drunk during 2002 accident

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By EMN Updated: Mar 27, 2015 10:42 pm
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IANS
MUMBAI, MARCH 27

Bollywood actor Salman Khan on Friday told a Mumbai court, conducting the trial of the 2002 hit-and-run case involving him, that he was neither driving the vehicle at the time of the accident nor was he drunk.Khan testified before Additional Sessions Judge D.W. Deshpande that his driver Ashok Singh was at the wheel that night.
Khan’s white Toyota Land Cruiser rammed into the American Express Bakery in suburban Bandra, close to his sea-front home in Galaxy Apartments, in the early hours of September 28, 2002.
One pavement dweller sleeping outside the bakery was killed and four others were injured, leading to Khan’s arrest by Bandra Police later that morning.
Denying the prosecution charges that he was inebriated at the time of the accident, Khan said he had not consumed liquor on that night and claimed the evidences adduced against him in the case was “false”.
Khan disputed several witness accounts, including that of his police bodyguard the late Ravindra Patil, who had said the actor was seen coming out of the driving seat.
“My left door was jammed so I couldn’t open it,” Khan told the judge.
When confronted with the statements of a parking lot attendant, who had said he handed over the car to the actor, Khan said he did not remember.
The actor did not deny that he had gone to a bar with his brother Sohail Khan and some friends earlier that night, but said he never ordered any cocktails as indicated by the bills and only consumed water at the bar.
Sporting a white shirt and blue jeans, Khan arrived at the court at around 11 a.m. on Friday and his deposition started after about half an hour.
He was accompanied by sisters Alvira and Arpita and a personal bodyguard.
The actor was ordered to appear personally before the judge to record his statement under Section 313 of the Criminal Procedure Code, considered a crucial stage in the retrial of the case before the final arguments begin. The actor is facing charges under IPC Section 304(II) — culpable homicide not amounting to murder which attracts a 10-year jail sentence; Sec. 279 (rash driving); Sec. 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life of others); Sec. 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life); Sec. 427 (mischief causing damage); and under Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949.

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By EMN Updated: Mar 27, 2015 10:42:52 pm