Salman's blood samples were tampered, claims lawyer

The defence lawyer in Salman’s 2002 hit-and-run has accused the Mumbai police of tampering with Salman’s blood samples. In the last hearing, Shivade made his arguments before judge D W Deshpande. Shivade said, “In this case, Shashikant Pawar of J J hospital has deposed that police asked him to test the sample... This shows an unholy nexus between the doctors and police.”

Shivade then raised the question why Bandra police hadn’t collected blood sample at the close by Bhabha Hospital. Instead, why had they taken the actor to JJ Hospital that is a government hospital in south Mumbai? Shivade said, “There is a mention that blood collection facility was not available there. Is this possible? Bhabha Hospital is a reputed hospital. It has an operation theatre and an ICU.”

The doctor wasn’t wearing gloves when he drew the sample. He didn’t even any anti-coagulants that prevent the blood from becoming a semi-solid mass. Moreover, preservatives hadn’t been added and therefore it is very well possible that the blood underwent fermentation. Shivade said, “In such a case, the sample would indicate presence of alcohol even if alcohol has not been consumed by the person, or would show higher alcohol content.” He then argued that there is a possibility of contamination too, because the tests were conducted in the same room where blood vials were stored. He said, “Do you want to follow the procedure laid down here, or that of Namibia and Ethiopia The evidence is silent about how it was kept, where it was kept and under whose custody.”

Salman’s consent wasn’t taken before his blood was extracted. “Consent was not taken....absence of this destroys further examination. The extraction of blood is destroyed (as evidence) because of non-consent,” said Shivade. Further reasons to not trust the samples are that, these samples had been sealed by a ward boy. Also, the medical examination of Salman had been done in a hurry – in just 5 minutes! Salman’s lawyer explains – “The case paper shows that Salman was brought before the doctor at 2.55 pm and was discharged at 3 pm. The exhibits show Khan’s pulse was checked, which was 88 per minute, his eyes were checked for dilation, his blood pressure was checked, which was 138/88, abdomen was examined, which was soft. As far as smell was concerned, it was kept blank which means there was no smell (of alcohol) and also whether he is able to walk straight. Is all this possible in five minutes.?”