Faced with criticism over granting parole to Bollywood actor and 1993 Mumbai blast convict Sanjay Dutt, Pune Divisional Commissioner Prabhakar Deshmukh clarified that he gave the green signal only after the Mumbai policesent a report that verified the claim that Mr. Dutt’s wife Maanyata was unwell and needed treatment.
Mr. Deshmukh said that he had rejected the first report by the Mumbai police on the ground that it did not follow the procedure laid down by the government.
Mr. Dutt first applied for parole on July 26. As per the guidelines, the local Assistant Commissioner of Police is required to conduct an investigation to verify the claims made in a parole application.
The first report submitted on September 16 by Bandra ACP Shivajirao Kolekar was found unsatisfactory by Mr. Deshmukh. “The report was ambiguous and unclear. The police had not taken any stand; neither had they conducted any enquiry into the grounds for the parole. They had only suggested that it should be approved,” Mr. Deshmukh told The Hindu on Sunday. “There was no medical report attached, neither was the doctor’s recommendation mentioned.”Asked about this, ACP Kolekar said: “I receive many applications for parole and don’t recollect clearing the actor’s.”
The second report submitted to Mr. Deshmukh on November 26 fulfilled the required criteria. “This report made it clear that Ms. Maanyata Dutt had a tumour in the liver which needed treatment.”
Ms. Dutt’s doctor, Dr. Ajay Chaughule, said on Saturday that a tumour had been detected in her liver three weeks back in November. Asked by The Hindu if Ms. Dutt was suffering from an ailment that required attention in July, when Mr. Dutt first applied for parole, Dr. Chaughule denied knowing of such a medical need. “She has a heart condition for which I have been treating her for the last three years,” he said.
The doctor — who specialises in beating heart coronary bypass surgery, lung and liver transplant and practises in Global Hospital, Mumbai — also said the police had approached him as a “formality” while reviewing the parole application. “They only wanted to know details about the hospital I work for,” he told The Hindu on Sunday. Interestingly, he said the police did not made any inquiries in September, when the first report approving Mr. Dutt’s parole was sent to the Pune police.
Reacting to Maharashtra Home Minister R.R. Patil’s statement that the matterwould be looked into, Mr. Deshmukh said the government could withdraw the parole or appeal against it in the High Court. “I only acted upon the directions of the police itself, and in accordance with the government guidelines,” he said.