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Convicted Bollywood star Khan bailed

Bollywood star Salman Khan has been freed on bail, hours after being convicted of culpable homicide in a 2002 Mumbai hit-and-run case.

Bollywood star Salman Khan
Bollywood star Salman Khan

The Bombay high court gave him interim bail for two days after his lawyers filed an appeal against his sentence. The appeal will be heard on Friday.

On Wednesday morning, a sessions court sentenced the actor to five years in prison for killing a homeless man.

The man was among five people who were run over in the incident.

Khan had said his driver was behind the wheel, but the judge said the actor was driving the car and was under the influence of alcohol at the time.

The guilty verdict is being seen as a huge setback for Khan, although the jail term could have been as long as 10 years.

Following the verdict, Khan remained in the trial court while his lawyers went to the high court with the appeal. The actor is now expected to go home, at least for the next two days.

Khan is one of Bollywood’s biggest stars, appearing in more than 80 Hindi-language films. Several of his films, including Dabangg, Ready, Bodyguard, Ek Tha Tiger, Maine Pyar Kiya and Hum Aap Ke Hain Kaun, have been huge commercial hits.

On Wednesday morning, as the actor drove to court with his family and friends, fans prayed for the actor’s acquittal.

But Judge DW Deshpande found him guilty on the charge of culpable homicide.

“You were driving the car; you were under the influence of alcohol,” he told the actor as soon as the court proceedings began.

The 49-year-old actor was also found guilty of negligent driving and causing grievous harm to the victims and given separate terms for each offence, but defence lawyers said all the sentences would run concurrently. BBC

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