MUMBAI: Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt broke down in tears on Thursday as he announced he was abandoning his battle to avoid being sent back to jail for buying weapons from Mumbai gangsters.
Supporters had been urging Dutt to apply for a pardon after India's Supreme Court last week sentenced him to five years for buying firearms from mafia bosses who orchestrated a series of bombings in 1993 which killed 257 people.
But in an emotional press conference, flanked by family members, Dutt said he would accept his fate and surrender to prison authorities before a deadline expires in three weeks' time.
"I will surrender...the court has given me time," Dutt told reporters.
"With folded hands, I want to tell the media and the citizens of the country that when I have not applied for pardon, there is no debate," Dutt said, while repeatedly breaking down.
"Let me be in peace till I go ... I have lots of work to complete," he added.
He then hugged his sister and politician Priya Dutt, refusing to answer media queries.
Messages of sympathy and solidarity have poured in for the star since last week's verdict, with several high profile figures calling for the state governor to intervene and reduce Dutt's term on "humanitarian grounds".
The 53-year-old has already spent 18 months behind bars after his conviction by a lower court but he was released on bail in 2007 pending an appeal, which was struck down by the court last Thursday.
Dutt, whose mother was Muslim and father Hindu, has admitted to buying the weapons but insisted they were only meant to protect his family during communal riots in 1993 following the destruction of the Babri mosque.
The actor shot to fame in the mid-1980s in a string of action movies in which he performed his own stunts, earning him the nickname "Deadly Dutt".
He is best known for playing a mobster with a heart of gold in the popular "Munnabhai" series.
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May be good for his political career.
@Aaliya Q. First off why are there soo many Indian readers on this site? A. We Indians are always interested to share thoughts. Q.You hate Muslims and Pakistan but you want to be on a Pakistan news site and comment on everything A. NO we dont hate muslims & Pakistan(I dont know about you), Update your knowledge who has Tribune Ownership, its American.
Gulam Rasool"Kuldeep sharma" New Delhi
@ all INDIANS & PAKISTANIS
I am happy that Indians come and read our news websites. Regardless of my fellow Pakistanis who dont like that , it in reality pleases most of us Pakistanis that thank God atleast we can talk/argue with each other.
We cannot compare Pakistani justice system to Indian . The Indian is no doubt mature.
And no one is above the law . Sanjay Dutt has enjoyed far too many un-eligible days of free air.
I was happy to see how India handed the Italian case last week.
And regarding Raymond Davis issue , it is already a landmark event as to how we didnt just surrender at once. We are improving and developing , and I was happy to feel that atleast we spoke out for some short period.
Sanjay Dutt is a good person , no doubt he is ill-fated. Actors are ambassadors of humanity , and ambassadors have no religion ...
@Wajib: This photo reminded me of the 2002 photo of an Indian Gujarat riot victim who was also begging his attackers to spare his life with hands folded and teary eyes. For your kind information my friend, that guy has now become very famous- his name is Qutubuddin Ansari & he displays that that photo with pride & smile on his face: Don't look at one side of riots. In case of religious riots, both sides suffer & that is very sad for humanity. Sadly, India has a big history of communal riots & NO side can claim innocence.
@Aaliya: exactly which muslim are you talking about ??? and the thing about indian readers on your site, you should be happy that we are contributing to the success of this pakistani site.... as it has become popular in india with indian authors too writing articles.columns etc etc.............
@ Aliya.......what a joke??? Raymond Davis had no diplomatic immunity.......but you didnt have courage to stop him....you made yourself a joke when he was flown out of Pakistan...you had no guts to prosecute him....Recently, Italy bowed down to India and sent his marines to face trial in India for killing two Indians...India was ready to put Italian Ambassador to face trial if the marines would not return.....so this is called global prowess.....even when whole EU backed Italy, it ate humble pie fearing any damage with relations to India....and you talk about diplomatic immunity to Davis...:D so, if we can not spare a diplomat for law of land..who is sanjay dutt...but you wont get it...you are just one of those pakistanis who think Pakistan is world leader and entire world has only one thing to do- conspire against pakistan....you and your dreams, i must say...:D
*correction--he has a Shiva tattoo on his shoulder
I think many pakistanis are unaware of the fact that Sanjay Dutt has a tattoo of Lord Shiva on his chest which makes him unfit to be a muslim acc to islamic theology. I would request you guys to stop playing "minority" victim card and use it some other time..
@Aaliya: One more thing, someone commented above saying something about his Hindu daughters.. I’ll just say one thing to you.. HIS DAUGHTERS ARE HIS BUSINESS!!! This kinda comments show how much hatered you have for this guy, it’s not what he did according to the law, your just happy a Muslim is going to jail. I pity your thinking! He has only one daughter from the first wife that too he couldnt get after custody battle tells about the whole story of this man.He is asking for pardon on the humanitarian ground...Why doesnt he go to her and ask for pardon...The moral of the story is What you did ,you have to pay for it.And yes there is no hidden fact that he was having contacts with daud ibrahim and weaponry which were seized from him had to be used for Bombay blast.Bombay blast was as a result of babri mosque demolition and after affects.No doubt this man is a closest muslim..His father in law blames him for keeping his daughter in immense trauma causing her death.Now again as he married a woman ,has two kids from her .On that ground he is asking for pardon is unfathomable.
@Wajib: and not of a shia or christian in badami bagh two weeks ago..??
@Wajib: This photo reminded me of the 2002 photo of an Indian Gujarat riot victim who was also begging his attackers to spare his life with hands folded and teary eyes. Does it also not remind you of those thousands of Hindu girls in Pakistan who come out in burqas after being forcibly subjugated to accept Islam? Does it also not remind you of those thousands of people all over the world who have lost their loved ones just because of the 'Nobel' deeds of the 'Strategic assets'? Does it also not remind you of those Pakistani army men who were beheaded by the 'Strategic assets'? Does it also not remind you of those millions of Bangladeshis in 1971 who begged to be left alive to the Pakistani army? Does it also not remind you of those people killed in cold blood by the 'Strategic assets' in Mumbai on 26th of November?
If the above things do not 'remind' you of atrocities, then shame with your memories... And for all Pakistanis, please stop bothering about the state of Muslims elsewhere and start bothering about the state of Muslims inside Pakistan....
@minor: Raymond Davis had diplomatic immunity, you genius. Go look it up then talk. :)
First off why are there soo many Indian readers on this site? You hate Muslims and Pakistan but you want to be on a Pakistan news site and comment on everything. Just tells us how sickly obsessed you are with us. Please go read Times of India or some other overly dramatic Indian news source. Sunjay Dutt has paid for what he did. He's a big name so it's not like he's hiding a secret life, everything he does is in public eye, so he should be pardoned considering that he's a good human being now. I'm very sad for him and I'll pray that he has patience and peace during this tough time. One more thing, someone commented above saying something about his Hindu daughters.. I'll just say one thing to you.. HIS DAUGHTERS ARE HIS BUSINESS!!! This kinda comments show how much hatered you have for this guy, it's not what he did according to the law, your just happy a Muslim is going to jail. I pity your thinking!
@Hassan: dear friend ur justice system is just a growing bud now.........plz dont compare and feel bad......it will take time but ur justice system will grow and get reformed eventually....and 1 more question y did u let raymond davies go??
@raz khan: Thats wat...he has to spend 3 and a half years more now...either in arthur road jail or in yerwada jail pune...
They sent a high-profile actor to jail for possession of illegal weapons. And we can't send Sharukh Jatoi to jail for murder.
@Wajib: reminds me how hindus,shias ,christians and other minorities join hands daily to beg for their life when a barbaric crowd accusing them of so called blasphemy comes towards them.....
Stand up like a man and face what court has decided. Good gesture Sanjay, you should humbly go to jail and may be in few years govt will give you a pardon if your conduct is good.
Entire nation loves you but ghosts of past wont leave your back that easy.
He has already spent eighteen months in prison isn't the term should start from 19th months rather than from zero
while you shot down my first comment let me to tell you ET ,..This man's sympathy with muslims brings him down to such a stage.His betrayal with the nation didnt even go good with his own wife and there were series of clashes aftermath.Till date he cannot dare to face his hindu daughter(as others r muslim).
It is ironic how we love to see superstars as violent as possible in their movies , and in real life we dont want to tolerate them based on our religious norms.
We make what we see and we see what we make ...
People's faith in law and court is more important than 5 years of life of an actor who did a grave mistake. He must complete his sentence.
It was not only the weapons but his association with the perpertrators and assisting them them with the storage of the explosives used in the carnage.
This photo reminded me of the 2002 photo of an Indian Gujarat riot victim who was also begging his attackers to spare his life with hands folded and teary eyes.
So what..he has to pay for what he did..