Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, convicted in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case and currently lodged in Pune’s high-security Yerwada Central Jail, has been granted parole yet again, this time owing to his daughter’s nose surgery.
According to Maharashtra Home Department sources in Mumbai, the parole application was sanctioned by the Pune Divisional Commissioner’s office couple of days back and the actor is expected to be home soon after completion of the formalities including the surety bond. The 30-day parole can be extended by 60 more days.
Mr. Dutt’s counsel had put in the parole request to the State Home Department in the last week of July.
The actor’s frequent parole applications and their subsequent granting has been the butt of controversy and generated considerable media storm, leading to allegations leveled against the Yerwada Central Prison authorities of according Mr. Dutt “celebrity treatment”, despite the latter’s rebuttals that they aren’t soft-pedaling the actor’s prison sentence.
With his parole grant, the 54-year-old actor’s frequent leaves and furloughs exceed four months of jail sentence, From May 2013 to May 2014, Mr. Dutt spent over 118 days on parole or furlough.
He was controversially granted a 14-day furlough in December last year by the State prison authorities to enjoy the New Year with his family in Mumbai. After much drama, his pleas for an extension were rejected by authorities owing to popular uproar. Before that, he had taken a furlough twice, first in November 2013.
Mr. Dutt, serving the remainder of his five-year sentence for illegal possession and destruction of an AK-56 rifle before the 1993 Mumbai blasts which killed over 250 people, applied for a 30-day parole to the office of the Pune Divisional Commissioner.