After the recent acquittal of actor Salman Khan in the 2002 hit and run by the Bombay High Court, the Mumbai police issued a circular to all police stations highlighting the lapses and discrepancies in the case.
The circular, which has been reportedly issued by the additional commissioner of police (crime) KMM Prasanna, highlights 16 of the several procedural lapses in the case.
"Whatever anomalies the court pointed out, we have just passed on to our staff," said Prasanna. "That does not mean we accept them. We are only pointing it out to our men so that such things don't happen in the future."
The state had recently told the high court it would challenge the acquittal in the apex court.
Here are the 16 points the circular touches upon:
1. Bills were collected from Rain Bar in Santacruz, where the prosecution had alleged that Salman Khan drank liquor, without due certification under Section 65 (B) of the Evidence Act.
2. Bills of JW Marriott Hotel and the parking tag were seized by the police but were not shown in the panchanama, creating doubts about the evidence regarding where the actor went after leaving Rain Bar.
3. There are handwritten endorsements on the computer extracts in the bills of Rain Bar, but no evidence was collected as to who took the said endorsements, and how.
4. The actor was available from the morning of 28 September, 2002, for medical test at the Bandra police station, but he was only taken to JJ Hospital in the afternoon for blood sample collection.
5. While the blood sample of the deceased, Narula, was taken at Bhabha Hospital, why was the actor's blood sample collected at JJ Hospital? No explanation was given.
6. Though the blood samples had come on 28 September, 2002, to the Bandra police station from JJ Hospital, they were sent to the Forensic Laboratory in Kalina only on 30 September, 2002. Till then, they were kept in the police station where, the court had said, they might have been either tampered with or not stored properly.
7. A chain of custody of blood samples was not properly established because of the missing link.
8. The statement of the constable who brought blood samples of accused from the hospital to the police station was not recorded. He was not examined.
9. Important anomaly: 6 ml of blood was extracted from the actor's body in two containers, but the FDL received only 4 ml of blood.
10. The receiving clerk of FSL was not examined.
11. The investigating officer did not verify the medical papers while collecting them. Blood collection reports shows many discrepancies and defects, which were admitted.
12. No charge under Section 66 (i) (b) of the Bombay Prohibition Act was framed.
13. In two places, the FIR was altered, but no explanation was given.
14. Under Section 161, statements were not recorded of the witness. Nobody says Salman was driving the vehicle.
15. The defence had said that the tyre had burst, which was the reason for the crash. But the tyre was not sent to the forensic laboratory to deny their claims.
16. Actor Kamal Khan was not summoned to the trial when his address was available with the police - though he could have been a great witness for the police.