Blackbuck poaching case verdict: Judge who sent Salman to Jail transferred; bail hearing might be delayed

Last Updated: Sat, Apr 07, 2018 08:58 hrs
Salman Khan

New Delhi: Bollywood superstar Salman Khan might have to spend a few more nights in jail as District and Sessions Judge who was scheduled to hear the actor's bail plea in blackbuck poaching case has been transferred by the Rajasthan high court.

The Rajasthan HC transferred Sessions Judge Ravindra Kumar Joshi along with other 87 district judges.

Joshi was scheduled to take the decision on the bail plea, filed by the actor in Jodhpur Sessions Court on Saturday.

Looking to get bail for Salman, the team of defence lawyers had argued on Friday that there is a threat to his life. Ravindra Kumar Joshi, district and sessions judge at Jodhpur court, reserved his order till Saturday but has now been transferred to Sirohi.

The decision was announced in an order by the Registrar General of the High Court. Joshi will be replaced by Chandra Kumar Sonagra but it is not yet clear if he will take charge on Saturday. Legal experts believe that if Sonagra does not take charge, Salman could spend the entire weekend in jail. They, however, also say that bail pleas may be transferred to other courts on the grounds of unavailable judges.

The transfer of Joshi though is an absolutely routine process. In its order, the Registrar General of the High Court also announced the transfer of 87 District Judges and promotion of 20 judicial officers. For Salman though, it is of no significance.

Salman was found guilty under Section 9/51 of the Wildlife (Protection) Act in a blackbuck poaching case while all other actors accused - Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, Neelam and Sonali Bendre - were acquitted. The Bollywood superstar was sentenced to five years in jail and fined Rs 10,000.

He has now spent two nights in jail in a small but secure cell which has four blankets, a wooden bed and a cooler.

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