NEW DELHI: The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has condemned the decision of a Jodhpur Court to grant bail to Bollywood actor Salman Khan in connection with the 1998 blackbuck poaching case.
“While Salman Khan gets to go back home to his movie star life for now, blackbucks were made to pay the highest price, with their lives,” PETA India CEO Manilal Valliyate said in a statement.
Terming the decision in the actor’s case “unusual,” the NGO states that “these days, wildlife crime matters are commonly fast-tracked, bail is often denied, and offenders regularly receive seven-year prison sentences.”
Valliyate further said that the NGO has been involved in the case of a man from Maharashtra who killed a baboon as his first offense and has been denied bail for a record five times, and added that such cases usually warrant seven-year prison sentences.
“If animal abusers now expect to get bail easily or to have their cases dragged out, they are in for a major surprise," the CEO remarked.
The actor had on Thursday appealed for a bail following his conviction in the 20-year-old case.
Salman was sentenced to five years in prison after being convicted of killing two blackbucks in Jodhpur during the shooting of his movie 'Hum Saath Saath Hain' in 1998.
The other four accused - actors Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, Neelam, and Sonali Bendre - were acquitted in the case.