Sanjay Dutt, who is currently serving the remainder of his five-year prison term in Yerawada jail in the city after being convicted for the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai, on Wednesday walked out of the prison after he was awarded a 30-day parole by Divisional Commissioner of Pune. The latest parole has been given to the actor “to allow him to attend to his daughter who is set to undergo a nose surgery”. In last two years, the actor has been out of the jail for around five months.
The application seeking parole was submitted by Dutt’s lawyer in March this year. “The authorities took six months to decide on the application. The actor is now heading for Mumbai,” said his lawyer Hitesh Jain on Wednesday evening. The request for parole was granted by the Divisional Commissioner S Chokalingam about two days back. After obtaining the parole order from the Divisional Commissioner’s office, the jail administration completed the formalities on Wednesday before releasing the actor.
Dutt left the jail premises around 3 pm. As per rules, although he has been granted a 30-day parole, Dutt can apply and get an extension of 30 more days. While Chokalingam was unavailable for comment, jail officials said they received the order on Tuesday. “We released the actor after he provided us the surety,” said Uttam Pawar, Superintendent of Yerawada Central Prison. Frequent release of Dutt on parole and furlough has attracted criticism from several quarters. There have been allegations that the actor is being given a special treatment “because of his status, influence and popularity”. The state administration has maintained that it has been following the rules meant for every prisoner undergoing the imprisonment in the state jail.
Dutt was was brought to the prison in May 2013 after he surrendered before the TADA court following his conviction. In October 2013, he was granted furlough, which was extended by another 14 days. Then in January 2014, he was granted parole for 30 days, which was extended for 60 days. He was again granted a furlough of 14 day in December 2014, which was not extended after massive criticism in the media.
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