Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt will be released from jail by the end of February after completing his 40-month sentence, according to reports. The actor was supposed to be released in the first week of March.

Minister of State for Home Ranjit Patil has signed Dutt's release file, without penalising him for reaching the jail late during his furlough in January last year, DNA quoted sources in Patil's office as saying.

During his furlough in December 2014, Dutt was constantly in touch with the jail authorities waiting for the final order on his extension application, sources said. Dutt was granted a 14-day furlough on 24 December, 2014. After the furlough ended, he did not return to Yerawada jail in Pune as the decision on furlough extension was pending. The application was rejected later by the Maharashtra government and he surrendered on 10 January, 2015.

In January last year, Yerawada prison announced that Dutt's sentence has been extended by four more days as he reported late from his furlough. But it was later discovered that the failure was on the part of jail authorities that delayed the decision.

"The state has accepted that the fault was at its end and Dutt has been exonerated of all charges," source told DNA.

"He wrote letters to the jail authorities and also to the police station concerned to enquire if an order has come on his plea. He also maintained in his letters that in case of rejection, he will surrender immediately," another source said.

Dutt was convicted for illegal possession of a 9 mm pistol and an AK-56 rifle during the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts and was awarded a five-year sentence by the Supreme Court.