On Monday, Bollywood actor Salman Khan pleaded for a fresh trial before a sessions court in the hit-and-run case, saying the evidence adduced earlier before a magistrate be discarded as he was now facing a more serious charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
Salman's lawyer Srikant Shivade argued that the actor had not been given an opportunity in the magistrate's court to cross-examine witnesses vis-a-vis the additional charge of culpable homicide which was imposed on him recently.
The prosecution, however, opposed Salman's plea saying "this was an attempt to delay the trial."
The prosecution argued that the magistrate had adduced evidence on the basis of the deposition given by the witnesses. Hence, this evidence cannot be discarded.
Salman's lawyer pleaded that earlier it was a summary trial by the magistrate. However, as culpable homicide charge had been framed against the actor, the case was triable by a sessions court. "We should not be prejudiced because of want of cross examination of witnesses. Hence, a fresh trial may be conducted," he said.
Judge D W Deshpande reserved his order till December 5 on Salman's plea for a fresh trial.
A sessions court had on July 24 framed charges against Salman for culpable homicide for which he may face a jail term upto 10 years. Earlier, he was tried by a magistrate for rash and negligent driving which prescribes a two-year jail term.
On September 28, 2002, allegedly drunk Salman Khan rammed his SUV into a bakery on Hill Road, Bandra, in the early hours of the morning, killing one and injuring four persons asleep on the pavement outside.
The actor was earlier booked under Section 304-A, causing death by negligence.
But in January in the wake of new evidence provided by police the charges were changed to Section 304-II, culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
Apart from section 304(2) (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), the Bollywood superstar has also been charged under sections 279 (causing death by negligence), 337 (causing hurt by an act), 338 (causing grievous hurt), 427 (causing damage or mischief to property) of IPC, and provisions of Motor Vehicles Act and Bombay Prohibition Act.
The trial for this case began way back in 2006.