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Prosecution calls Salman Khan’s driver a ‘liar’, trashes his testimony in 2002 hit-and-run case

The prosecution sought action against Salman Khan's driver Ashok Singh for giving false evidence.

Salman Khan, Salman Khan Hit and Run Case, Salman Khan driver, Salman Khan 2002 hit and run case The prosecution sought action against Salman Khan’s driver Ashok Singh for giving false evidence. (Source: PTI)

During the hearing in the 2002 hit-and-run case in which Salman Khan is an accused, the prosecution on Monday said that the actor’s driver Ashok Singh was a “self-condemned liar” whose testimony should be discarded as there were inconsistencies in it.

Singh had said during his deposition that it was he, and not Khan, who was driving the car on the night of the accident.

In the early hours of September 28, 2002, Khan’s white Toyota Land Cruiser rammed into a shop suburban Bandra, close to his sea-front home in Galaxy Apartment, killing one person and injuring four others.

Salman Khan was also present in the court during the entire hearing on Monday.

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Special public prosecutor Pradeep Gharat said that once the driver’s evidence was discarded, the only explanation left was that Khan himself was driving the car. He said he would argue later on how Singh had made himself liable for perjury for lying under oath. “He had been thinking for 12 years and did not go to an advocate to understand? Is this natural conduct?” Gharat said, while claiming that Singh had given a parrot-like version of the event.

“Can it be accepted that a person like Salman Khan suffered because of ordinary driver?” he added.

Calling Singh a self-condemned liar, Gharat said there were parts in the latter’s deposition that proved he was not present on the site of the accident. “Singh said no one was found under the tyre while other witnesses said limbs of injured had got entangled with tyre,” Gharat said.

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According to Singh’s deposition, he had come forward as the actor’s father Salim Khan had instructed him to come and tell the truth. “The million-dollar question is how, on a particular day, he was produced before court. He was prepared to take the blame and face consequences in exchange for handsome money,” Gharat told the open court.

Singh has been employed as a driver with Salim Khan since 1990. Gharat questioned why Singh’s services had not been discontinued after the accident.

“Can it be believed that the very driver who worked with the family sat with his mouth shut even as Salman Khan kept facing trouble? Can it be accepted that the accused also kept silent and did not ask the driver to come forward?” the prosecution said.

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Singh had deposed that he had met one inspector named ‘Pardhi’ at Bandra police station where he went soon after the accident. “It is unchallenged evidence that within 5-10 minutes, Kadam and Pardhi reached the place of incident. He had falsely deposed that he met Pardhi,” Gharat said.

He said that Khan, who visited Rain Bar on the night of the accident, had been consuming liquor, particularly Bacardi white rum, as per the evidence. “The manager of Rain Bar had said he kept Bacardi rum and cocktails on table along with prawns and chicken. He had divided the order placed by Salman and his friends,” Gharat said.

He also said that since chauffeur-driven cars were not allowed to be parked in the porch of J W Marriott and the fact that Khan’s car was parked there, it showed it was the actor who had been driving the vehicle. Moreover, the parking attendant tried to close the driver’s seat where Salman was seated while the engine was running, Gharat said.

ruhi.bhasin@expressindia.com

First published on: 07-04-2015 at 01:45:06 am
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