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Blackbuck Poaching Case: Salman Khan 'Shared' Asaram's Food, But Rejected His 'Mattress Offer'

Sources said Bollywood actor Salman Khan, convicted in the 1998 blackbuck poaching case, spent a restless night in Jodhpur Central Jail.

Bhawani Deora | News18

Updated:April 6, 2018, 12:59 PM IST
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Blackbuck Poaching Case: Salman Khan 'Shared' Asaram's Food, But Rejected His 'Mattress Offer'
Salman Khan at the Jodhpur Jail on Thursday. (News18)
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Jodhpur: Bollywood actor Salman Khan, sentenced to five-year jail in the 1998 blackbuck poaching case, spent a restless night in the Jodhpur Central Prison, sources in the jail told News18.

Salman Khan, prisoner no. 106, was reportedly housed in barrack number 2 of the Jodhpur prison, with just a curtain separating him from rape accused and self-styled godman Asaram.

Sources said Salman refused the simple jail spread of Dal-Roti and accepted Asaram’s offer to share his food, which is brought from a nearby ashram every evening. The actor, however, refused when Asaram offered him his mattress, sources said.

The Dabbang star reportedly slept on a rug on the floor. Sources said his blood pressure shot up three times through the night, with doctors constantly monitoring the actor’s health. He was also given a tablet to keep his BP under check, sources said.

Jail superintendent Vikram Singh had earlier said that Salman would have a simple wooden bed, a rug and a cooler in his cell.

On the reported threat to Salman by a gangster, Singh said, “We are thinking of keeping him with some other prisoners from tomorrow (Friday) so that he is not alone considering the threat to him." A local gangster had reportedly said he would kill Salman in Jodhpur.

The actor will spend another night in the jail as the Sessions Court will continue hearing arguments over his bail plea on Saturday.

This is Salman's fourth stint in the Jodhpur Central Jail. He had earlier spent a total of 18 days in the jail in 1998, 2006 and 2007, all for cases of poaching.

The actor was alleged to have shot and killed the blackbucks in Kankani village near Jodhpur on the night of October 1, 1998 during the shooting of the film Hum Saath Saath Hain. Blackbuck, from the antelope family, is an endangered animal and included in the schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act-1972.

While Salman was convicted, the trial court in Jodhpur acquitted his Bollywood colleagues Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, Neelam and Sonali Bendre and a local, Dushyant Singh, giving them the "benefit of doubt" for the incident in October 1998. Besides attracting attention due to Salman's popularity, the case also caught the nation's imagination because it was the first time that five actors were involved in one single case.

"The accused is a popular actor whose deeds are followed by people. Despite this, the accused hunted two blackbucks," said Chief Judicial Magistrate Dev Kumar Khatri in his written judgment.

The verdict triggered a deluge of sympathy from colleagues for the "bad boy" of Hindi filmdom, whose career and personal life have been peppered with controversies, including a manslaughter charge in a hit-and-run case that is still pending.

Animal rights activists welcomed the sentencing, and some said Salman should have been given the maximum punishment under the Wildlife Act.

(With PTI inputs)
| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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