MUMBAI: The lawyer of the Bollywood superstar Salman Khan today argued before the Bombay High Court that evidence is silent on whether sterilised syringes were not used for collecting the actor's blood sample after the 2002 hit-and-run mishap involving him.
The actor's blood sample was taken to ascertain whether he was driving under the influence of alcohol.
Justice A R Joshi is hearing the appeal filed by Salman against the five-year sentence awarded to him by the sessions court after finding him guilty of ramming his car into a shop in suburban Bandra and killing one person and injuring four on September 28, 2002.
"Syringes need to be sterilised. However, the evidence is silent on whether it was done or not," said senior counsel Amit Desai, arguing for Salman who is at present on bail. "The tampering (with blood samples) has started right from here," Desai contended. He had argued earlier that the samples, which were sent to laboratory, were possibly not Salman's but somebody else's or they were tampered with.
According to the prosecution, blood test proved that Salman was drunk that night. Desai argued that the prosecution did not establish whether disposable sterilised syringes were used and whether a syringe was used immediately (after undergoing boiling for sterilisation) or after some time. "This results in tampering," he alleged.
One of the witnesses had told the trial court that traditional syringes, which are boiled to sterilise (and reused), were used, he pointed out.
Desai also reiterated his argument that Salman's written consent was not taken while drawing the blood. "When the blood was drawn, proper procedures and protocols laid down in the law has to be followed," he said.
After the blood is drawn, anti-coagulant and preservative has to be added and it was not known whether the blood sample was shaken properly to dissolve the anti-coagulant, he said. Arguments would continue tomorrow.