Lawyer “accused” of threatening a victim in Salman case

Updated - November 16, 2021 07:03 pm IST

Published - May 20, 2014 06:42 pm IST - Mumbai

As the 2002 hit-and-run trial is underway in a Mumbai court against actor Salman Khan, there is one lawyer who does not want any media attention. He has been accused by a victim of threatening him to change his testimony in lieu of Rs. 5 lakh. “I have unnecessarily got negative attention. I don’t want any,” he told The Hindu on Tuesday.

He said it was ironic that the victim whom he had helped get compensation from Salman Khan nearly a decade ago, would level such allegations against him.

Muslim Shaikh, a victim who fractured his leg in the 2002 accident, had made an allegation claiming that an “anonymous caller “ had offered him Rs. 5 lakh for backtracking on his testimony. He had provided advocate Mukesh Pandey’s number as the one from which he received the call.

Advocate Pandey told The Hindu on Tuesday that he failed to understand why Muslim Shaikh would give his number as “an anonymous number”, when he had called him over a dozen times for seeking advice. Adv Pandey had represented Muslim Shaikh in a compensation case in the Bombay High Court in 2004 when the court had directed Salman Khan to give Rs. 3 lakh to Mr. Shaikh.

The Sessions court, on Tuesday, refused to interfere in the matter. “The police will investigate this complaint. It will ascertain the truthfulness of the complaint. Proceed according to law. The court will not interfere,” the Sessions court judge said.

The Bandra police have already registered the complaint and recorded Mr. Pandey’s statement on May 13. But they have not yet submitted any report in the case to the court.

 “I have submitted a representation to the Maharashtra Home Minister, the Mumbai Police Commissioner, the Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime), and other concerned police officers. I have also attached a copy of my Call Data Record in my police statement to show that I had neither called Muslim Shaikh on 4 May, nor had he called me on that date,” Mr. Pandey said.

Mr. Pandey claimed that Muslim Shaikh approached him last month after a gap of more than seven years. “I had represented him in the 2004 case in the Bombay High Court. I had helped him open a bank account to ensure he got the cheque issued by the court. After the trial in the case in the Bandra court in 2006, I had not been in touch with him till last month when he came to me,” he said.

Muslim Shaikh was brought to Mumbai by the police from his native place. Mr. Pandey claimed that Mr. Shaikh had himself called him over 22 times between April 27 and May 5.

Investigating officer Inspector Rajendra Kane told The Hindu that he did not need to submit any report to the court in the matter now. “The court has refused to interfere. So I will do my investigation and take further action according to the procedure,” he said. Apart from confirming that he had recorded the statements of the advocate and the victim, he refused to divulge anything else about the case.

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