Mumbai, March 28 (IANS) Actor Sanjay Dutt, who has been convicted under the Arms Act for his role in the 1993 Mumbai bombings, said Thursday that he would "surrender" when the time comes and would not be seeking "pardon".
Speaking out for the first time since the Supreme Court verdict last week, Sanjay appealed to the media for privacy. The 53-year-old also said there were many others who deserved a pardon more than him.
He said: "I will surrender in the given time of Supreme Court. I have not applied for any pardon. I want to tell the media and the citizens of our country, when I am not going for a pardon, then there is no debate about it."
An emotional Sanjay, who broke down while addressing the media, said he had the highest respect for the court.
"I am a shattered man, my family is shattered. I want to thank whoever has supported us. I have a lot of work to finish and now I want to spend my time with my family. It's tough time for me and my family. With folded hands, I want to tell you just let me be in peace till the time I go in," said the actor, who is married to Manyata and has twins with her.
On March 21 the Supreme Court upheld Sanjay's conviction under the Arms Act in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case and sentenced him to five years in jail.
He was asked to surrender in four weeks to serve his remaining term of about three-and-a-half year.
An estimated Rs.100 crore is riding on the Bollywood star who is part of upcoming projects "Zanjeer" remake, "Policegiri", "Munna Bhai 3" and "P.K.".
The actor has about three weeks' time to surrender and he said he would be completing his work commitments before going in.
He was accompanied at the press conference by his sister and Congress MP Priya Dutt.
Several members of film fraternity and some politicians spoke in Sanjay's support.
Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh and actor-turned politician Jaya Prada Tuesday met Maharashtra Governor K. Sankaranarayanan.
Last week, Press Council chief Justice Markandey Katju wrote to the governor to exercise his powers and pardon the actor.
However, other political parties like the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Shiv Sena opposed it, saying it would not be fair to pardon Sanjay.