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Salman leaves for Jodhpur to surrender (Lead)

Mumbai, Aug 25 (IANS) Bollywood star Salman Khan left for Jodhpur Saturday to surrender before a court that has issued an arrest warrant against him for hunting an endangered chinkara deer nine years ago.

2007-08-25T11:02:00Z

Mumbai, Aug 25 (IANS) Bollywood star Salman Khan left for Jodhpur Saturday to surrender before a court that has issued an arrest warrant against him for hunting an endangered chinkara deer nine years ago.

Salman told reporters outside his residence that he would catch a flight to the Rajasthan city.

A district and sessions court in Jodhpur Friday dismissed his plea against a five-year jail term handed by a lower court.

The Jodhpur police had earlier readied a five-member team to go to Mumbai to arrest the hugely popular actor.

In April last year, Salman had filed an appeal in the district and sessions court against the judgement of the chief judicial magistrate's court in Jodhpur that had sentenced him to five years rigorous imprisonment and fined him Rs.25,000.

The court had found Salman guilty under Section 51 of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Salman spent three nights in Jodhpur Central Jail before the district and sessions court gave him bail.

On Friday, district and sessions judge Kamal Raj Singhvi rejected his appeal and upheld the five-year jail term and the fine. The district court also issued an arrest warrant against him.

The star of hit films like 'Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam' failed to appear for the hearing Friday, saying he had missed the flight to Jodhpur from Hyderabad where he was shooting. However, his sister Alvira was in the court.

Salman has been convicted of poaching a chinkara deer at Ghoda farm near Jodhpur on the night of Sep 28, 1998 while filming for Sooraj Barjatya's blockbuster 'Hum Saath Saath Hain'.

A case was registered against Salman and five others under the Indian Penal Code, the Wildlife Protection Act and the Indian Arms Act Oct 11, 1998.

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