Ace actor Sanjay Dutt on Thursday morning moved Supreme Court to seek the staying of an Arms Act conviction, he faces. The stay will pave the way for him to contest the forthcoming parliamentary elections from Lucknow as a Samajwadi Party candidate.
Dutt’s lawyers are expected to plead for an early hearing when the case comes up for mention Friday morning.
Dutt recently sprang a surprise on political analysts by joining the SP, which said Dutt would be the party candidate from the prestigious Uttar Pradesh capital.
The Representation of the People Act of the constitution bars anyone sentenced to more than two years imprisonment from contesting elections till a court of law stays the conviction and sentence.
A failure to obtain the waiver will result in the rejection of Dutt’s nomination and render strapping six-footer unfit to contest the elections.
Dutt had been convicted for six-year jail term for possessing weapons in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case. Currently he is on bail and his appeal is pending in the apex court.
In his petition Sanjay Dutt says that he had been convicted under the Arms Act and not TADA and added that it was his first offence.
Dutt’s lawyers have quoted Navjot Singh Sidhu’s case as a precedent, where the Supreme Court allowed the cricketer to contest polls despite conviction in a murder case for more than two years.
While granting bail on November 27, 2007, the court had directed Dutt to surrender his passport and asked him not to leave the country without its permission.
Scion of a top Bollywood family, Dutt, who was sentenced in July 2007, had earlier spent 18 months in jail as an under-trial.