Be present or face warrant: Court's warning to Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan
Mumbai, Apr 6: A local metropolitan magistrate court today gave "a last chance" to actor Saif Ali Khan to appear before the court on the next date of hearing in a 2012 assault case.
The court had, on March 19, directed Khan to remain present today as the first witness and complainant Iqbal Sharma was to depose against the actor.
However, Khan's lawyer today filed exemption application saying the actor could not make it as he was shooting abroad in an ad film.
Prosecutor Wajid Sheikh objected to the application and sought issuance of warrant against Saif.
Magistrate Shankar Dabhade gave him a last chance to appear after Khan's lawyer said he will make sure the actor remained present on the next date.
The court said if the actor did not come next time, a warrant may be issued against him. The next hearing would be on June 18.
Khan and his two friends -- Bilal Amrohi and Shakkel Ladak -- were arrested following a complaint filed by Iqbal Mir Sharma, an NRI businessman, after an alleged fight at a restaurant inside Taj Hotel here on February 22, 2012.
The three were later released on bail. The court has framed charges against them under Sections 325 (assault) and 34 (common intention) of Indian Penal Code.
They have pleaded innocence. According to the police, when Sharma protested the raucous chatter of the actor and his friends, Saif allegedly threatened him and subsequently punched Sharma in the nose, fracturing it.
The NRI businessman also accused Saif and his friends of hitting his father-in-law Raman Patel.
Saif, on the other hand, said that Sharma made provocative statements and used abusive language against the women accompanying him (including his wife, actor Kareena Kapoor and her sister Karishma) which led to a spat.