Breather for Salman in hit and run case? Actor was not under influence of alcohol, says doc

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Mumbai, Jan 22: A doctor in the 2002 hit-and-run case involving superstar Salman Khan said the actor smelt of alcohol when he was brought for a blood test soon after the mishap, but he was not under the influence of alcohol.

A witness in the same case had earlier said the actor was not smelling of liquor when he met him at his place a few hours after the incident took place.

Breather for Salman in hit and run case?
"The patient's (Salman) pupils were slightly dilated, speech was coherent and walking steps were normal during clinical examination," Dr Shashikant Pawar told Special Public Prosecutor Pradeep Gharat in the court.

According to police, Khan's car had rammed into a roadside shop in suburban Bandra killing one person and injuring four people who were sleeping on pavement on September 28, 2002. The actor was taken to Government-run J J Hospital soon after the mishap for necessary examination.

Pawar at that time was attached to the hospital. To a query, Pawar said Khan was smelling of liquor when he was brought to him but during clinical examination later in the day, he did not appear to be under the influence of alcohol.

This was a preliminary finding and the report of chemical analysis of the actor's blood sample was awaited. However, the Bollywood star had told him he had not taken drinks, Pawar, who appeared as a prosecution witness, told Sessions Judge D W Deshpande.

However, during cross-examination by Khan's lawyer Srikant Shivade, Pawar admitted he had not recorded in the case papers prepared by him that Khan smelt of alcohol. He, however, could not assign any reason for not recording this fact.

The doctor admitted that there were no clear guidelines by the Health Department regarding cases where blood test should be conducted. Pawar said he had taken Khan's consent for the blood test but this had not been recorded in the case papers.

He admitted the case papers did not bear the signature or thumb impression of the actor. Asked if it was necessary to take consent for blood test, he replied in the affirmative.

To a question, the doctor said dilation of pupils could be due to many reasons though consumption of alcohol could be one of the factors. "One cannot conclusively say that pupils were dilated due to consumption of alcohol."

Nearly 20 witnesses have already been examined in the case and a few more are left to depose. The trial has also reached its fag end and the judge has asked the prosecution to wrap up the case as soon as possible.

Khan is being tried for culpable homicide not amounting to murder. If convicted, he could spend upto 10 years in prison.

OneIndia News

(With inputs from agencies)

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