The article “This plot needs a new ending” (March 26) revolves around the argument that Sanjay Dutt acquired an automatic weapon (AK-56 rifle) for protecting him and his family from mob attacks during the Mumbai riots which followed the Babri Masjid demolition. Can the perceived threat justify acquiring an automatic weapon through illegal means (“alternative channels”)? Can an “honourable” man acquire an AK-56 without having contacts with notorious criminals? The legal and justifiable end to the plot would be to honour the Supreme Court verdict in letter and in spirit.

R. Prabu Ananth,


Shanti Bhushan is wrong in calling Sanjay Dutt an honourable person. In India, only the security forces have the right to possess and use automatic weapons because they are under the government’s control. If the court were to set Sanjay Dutt free, which I hope and pray it will not, we will send out the message that anybody can acquire deadly weapons under the pretext of protecting someone.

M.G. Manjunath,


Any person who stands for justice and what is right is vulnerable to threats from anti-social elements. That does not mean he or she has the right to possess an AK-56 illegally, and put the entire society at risk. Sanjay might have acted in self-defence but his act was grossly irresponsible.

K.V. Vivek,


All celebrities are bound to receive threats against themselves and their families. The way to handle it is to get police protection, hire security agencies or carry a licensed weapon. The argument that Sanjay Dutt had no choice other than acquiring illegal weapons from questionable sources to protect himself and hence must be let off is laughable. An illegal act is an illegal act.

R. Rajeev Ayyappan,


When a person feels his family is under some threat, he should ask for police protection. Sanjay Dutt, instead, went to the underworld to buy a lethal weapon. The highest court of India has found him guilty. He should not get any benefit that an ordinary Indian cannot get.

P.R. Chandramohan,


Why would anyone need an assault rifle for protection in a city like Mumbai? It has been proved that the assault rifle was part of the consignment smuggled into India for terrorist activities. It is certain that Sanjay had friends in the underworld. Let him go to jail.

B. Krishnakumar,


After the 1993 Bombay blasts, investigating officers established a clear link between Sanjay Dutt, the D-company and Abu Salem. In 2001, media channels reported of an audio tape containing a conversation between Sanjay Dutt and Chhota Shakeel. Were Sanjay’s connections with the underworld for reasons of “private defence?”

Karunendra Mishra,

New Delhi

Carrying Mr. Bhushan’s argument to its logical conclusion, all of us can keep automatic weapons like AK-56 with us as long as we perceive a threat to our lives.

Kapil Kr. Verma,

New Delhi

It is worth recalling the story of Karna in Mahabharata. He was known for lifelong charity and was under the protection of dharma devatha. But in the battlefield, Krishna took the form of a sadhu seeking alms and asked Karna to give him all the benefits of his charitable work so that Arjuna could kill him. The logic: although Karna was an embodiment of charity, he had associated himself with evil.

T.V. Shankar Narayanan,


Keywords: Sanjay Dutt

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