New Delhi: Sanjay Dutt's jail five-year term following his conviction under the Arms Act in the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts case has led to a political slugfest. While the Congress and Samajwadi Party leaders are in favour of granting pardon to Dutt, the BJP and Janata Party want no leniency shown to the Bollywood actor.
Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari has now said that the government can consider pardoning Dutt. Reacting to Press Council of India Chairperson Justice Markanday Katju's statements that Dutt should be pardoned. Tewari said that Katju has been a Supreme Court judge and when he speaks on any issue, people take it seriously. However, Dutt's case is a legal one and it should be taken up through the appropriate channel.
Tewari went on to say that there are several views on Dutt's jail term and he won't comment on it in his official capacity. The government departments and agencies involved with the case will take action, he said.
The actor will have to surrender within four weeks after the Supreme Court on Thursday sentenced him to five years in jail. Since he has already spent 18 months in jail in connection with this case, he will have to serve the remaining jail term of three-and-a-half years.