Blog Friday, May 08, 2015 - 05:30
You would think India had just won the cricket world cup on Friday morning, and for some weird reason, people were cheering in front of the Bombay High Court. Those cheers, however, were for Salman Khan, when his fans realised that he wouldn’t be going to jail as the Bombay High Court had suspended his sentence pending appeal. Similiar cheers may have played out elsewhere including in the virtual world, where many of his fellow celebs wrung their hands in despair.  Khan and by extension his lawyers, are perfectly within their rights to pursue legal recourse right up to the Supreme Court and even the President if at all, he finds himself on death row. There can be no argument against him seeking the suspension of his sentence, nor against his lawyers for calling the prosecution’s argument “perverse”. It is, after all, their job to get him off. As sympathy began to pour in for Khan, the word “Bhai-tard” began to be used, to describe the adulation in support of Khan. The general tone of the support was that “Oh, but he was so generous!” or “Look at how much work he’s done!”. There were also many who defended the “unfair” treatment meted out to him because he had tried to climb the stairs of a bakery in his car, and a bunch of homeless people were in the way. Salman / Bhai / Sallu may be a very caring person, generous to a fault, a very loving towards his family, the party animal who cheers his friends up, and the inspiration for the “Salman universe” that his fans living in a parallel reality. Khan was not being tried for being a “good person”, or having made male virginity a source of pride for many of his fans.  He was tried for a specific offence – of having killed one person, and injured four others knowing that the consequences of driving in an inebriated state could cause harm – and was found guilty. When pronouncing a conviction, Sessions judge DW Deshpande found it “improbable” that a driver who had been employed by Khan’s family since 1990, had suddenly remembered that it was he was behind the wheel, and that for all these Khan’s lawyers never thought to bring it this to the notice of the court. Maybe Salman did undergo a change, maybe he is not the same man who allegedly assaulted his girlfriend, and has turned into a beautiful human being whose conduct since should give him VIP entry into a heaven that he might believe in. Great, but it still does not cancel out the death he caused. The law never had a problem with his angelic nature, but only with the allegation of drunk driving that got a homeless man killed, and which has now been proved.  Eight-year-old's letter to Tamil filmmakers asking an important question is adorable
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