Salman Khan’s plea for Sarabjit goes viral

Bollywood superstar's brothers have run into a new controversy

The Khan family is back in the news once again; only this time, the identity of the black sheep is cause for some confusion amongst the paparazzo camped outside their plush Galaxy Apartments home of late.
 
Superstar Salman Khan, who gained notoriety for his violent off-screen antics in the past, has undergone an image makeover that many close to him attribute to his Being Human charitable initiative.
 
Khan’s humanitarian streak has now seen the actor launch a social media campaign last weekend to spare the life of Sarabjit Singh, the Indian prisoner who has been incarcerated in a Pakistani prison since 1990, accused of playing a part in the Lahore and Faisalabad bombings that killed 14 people that same year.
 
Serving a death sentence that has been repeatedly postponed, Khan is one such celebrity who has now taken up the cause to bring Singh back home to his family.
 
Indian news channel NDTV reported earlier that the “Dabangg” actor even hosted Singh’s sister and daughters on the sets of the film’s sequel at Mehboob Studio, quoting a source.
 
Singh’s sister Dalbir Kaur is actively working towards his release, with the help of his wife Sukhpreet Kaur and two daughters, Poonam and Swapnadeep
 
The meeting came post the 46-year-old’s social media campaign on Twitter and Facebook, urging people to sign a petition to free Singh.
 
Khan tweeted earlier: “Requesting the people of Pakistan to support me to help free Surabjeet who has been in prison since 30 years. Please. For the sake of Allah [sic].”
 
The appeal continued over the days, with Khan taking to Twitter again to write: “Request to the people of Pakistan, member’s of the press, government of Pakistan, President Zardari, a humble request: It would be the most amazing gesture, to send Surabjeet back to his family after 30 years.”
 
He continued the appeal on Facebook via his Being Human account, stating: “For over 20 years, Sarabjit Singh is in a Pakistan prison for a crime he did not commit. He and his family have suffered for too long. Please sign this petition to appeal to the Pakistan government that he be freed and united with his family in Punjab.”
 
The online petitions are on Facebook and Beinghumanonline.com.
 
Controversy not far behind
 
Yet, even as the older Khan takes his stand against what he believes in injustice against an innocent man acing solitary confinement for decades, his younger brothers are battling their own demons as the case involving the death of a 70-year-old woman in Mumbai complicates matters on the home front.
 
According to reports, the Lexus that was involved in the Sunday night accident in Bandra belongs to brother Arbaaz Khan, while driving the vehicle was youngest Khan, Sohail’s driver.
 
Pratap Dighavkar, Deputy Commissioner Of Police (Zone 9) told Indian news media Daily Bhaskar: “Both Arbaaz and Sohail Khan will be questioned. In an accident case, both the individuals on whose name the car is registered and the one, who used it will be grilled. Only the driver was in the car, Arbaaz or Sohail were not present.”
 
The driver has reportedly tested negative for alcohol, but many have taken to sending out tweets and BlackBerry messages, condemning the Khan family once again, as the case bears a strong resemblance to the older Salman Khan’s similar mishap of September 2002 where one person was killed and four others sleeping on a pavement in Bandra were injured when his Toyota Land Cruiser allegedly rammed into a bakery.
 
The case is still pending.

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