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Celebrations broke out outside Salman’s residence

Mumbai: Celebrations broke out outside Bollywood actor Salman Khan’s residence Galaxy Apartment here on Thursday evening with fans, including women, busting crackers, dancing to tunes of drums and distributing sweets.

Fans waiting outside his residence burst into jubilant as soon as the actor returned home from the Bombay High Court, which absolved him in connection with in connection with the 2002 hit-and-run case.

One of the fans told ANI: “I am very happy with the high court’s decision and that is why I am distrusting sweets among people.”

Salman was earlier sentenced by Sessions court to five years in jail in May.

The Bombay high court, however, said Salman Khan cannot be convicted in the case, as the prosecution has not proven the charges against the actor.

Justice A.R. Joshi pointed out that Salman can’t be convicted because of “various shortcomings in investigations and prosecution’s evidence. Salman had appealed to the high court to overturn a sessions court judgment.

Justice Joshi said after seeking Salman’s presence in court at the time of pronouncing the verdict that doubt arises over involvement of appellant on charges. Investigation was conducted in faulty manner with scant regard to procedure.

On Wednesday, the high court opened a window of hope for the actor when it had observed that the prosecution had not convincingly proved the 49-year-old actor was drunk or driving his Toyota Land Cruiser when the vehicle ran over five sleeping people on a pavement, one of whom died later, in Bandra West on September 28, 2002.

Justice Joshi said it was difficult to rely on the testimony of Late Ravindra Patil, the police guard who was in the vehicle at the time of the accident.

He observed that Patil, who died of tuberculosis in 2007, was not a “wholly reliable witness” because of the numerous changes in his statements during the course of the trial, although he was the lone witness to testify that Salman was drunk at the wheel. (ANI)