A Mumbai court on Monday rejected an application by the Narcotics Control Bureau seeking directions to prevent attempts to create hurdles in the investigation of a drugs case involving actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan, reported Bar and Bench.
Special Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Judge VV Patil said that he could not pass such a blanket order. He added that it was for the concerned courts or authority to pass an order at the appropriate stage.
Patil said the matter was sub-judice in bail application filed by the accused persons before the Bombay High Court.
Earlier, the Narcotics Bureau had submitted before the court that an affidavit filed by Prabhakar Sail, a witness in the case, has indicated that he has turned hostile, according to NDTV.
In his affidavit, Sail had claimed that he had overheard private investigator Kiran Gosavi talk about a Rs 18-crore deal, of which Rs 8 crore was to be paid to the anti-drugs agency’s zonal director Sameer Wankhede. He had also claimed that soon after Aryan Khan’s arrest in the case, he was made to sign on 10 sheets of blank paper at the anti-drug agency’s office.
The anti-drugs agency demanded in its application that the court should not take cognisance of his affidavit.
Sail is the bodyguard of Gosavi, who was seen in a selfie with Aryan Khan inside the anti-drug agency’s office. Both Sail and Gosavi are witnesses in the drugs case.
During Monday’s hearing, Wankhede’s counsel told the court that personal allegations were being made against him and his family members.
“Why are there allegations against my [Wankhede] family members?” he asked. “Is it because of my supervisory position? Is it only to divert me and make me fail in court.”
The counsel also said that the agency’s zonal chief was ready for any kind of investigation into Sail’s allegations. “Such allegations only to target my personal life and work is not done,” he said.
The agency’s affidavit also claimed that some people were using their influence to tamper with the investigation.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil on Monday said that police protection had been provided to Sail, PTI reported. He, however, declined to comment on the witness’ allegations.
Earlier in the day, Sail had approached the Sahar Police Station in Mumbai, demanding that he should be given security whenever he visits his village to meet his wife, children and mother-in-law, who live there.
Allegations made by the witness
In his affidavit, Sail had claimed that Gosavi, a person called Sam D’Souza and a woman, Pooja Dadlani, had met in a car in the early hours of October 3, a day after the central agency’s raid in which Khan was arrested. Dadlani is the manager of Shah Rukh Khan, according to media reports. However, Sail’s affidavit does not mention this.
Sail had also claimed that Gosavi has gone missing and that he too fears being abducted or killed. “As seen in the big cases, witnesses are often killed or taken away and I therefore want to state the truth,” the affidavit said.
On Monday, Sail went to the office of Mumbai Police Commissioner Hemant Nagrale, reported ANI. A day earlier, Wankhede had also written to Nagrale requesting him to ensure that no legal action was carried out “to frame him with ulterior motives”.
Wankhede had claimed that some “public functionaries have” threatened him with imprisonment and dismissal from his job. He said that some people were planning to initiate legal action against him. However, he did not name anybody.
The drugs case
Aryan Khan and seven others were arrested by the central agency after a raid on a cruise party off the coast of Mumbai on October 2. The agency said it had seized 13 grams of cocaine, 5 grams of mephedrone, 21 grams of charas, 22 pills of MDMA (ecstasy) and Rs 1.3 lakh from the ship.
Khan is in custody after a special court in Mumbai denied him bail on October 20. He has approached the Bombay High Court for bail.
Khan’s lawyers have repeatedly argued in courts that no drugs were found in his possession.
However, on October 20, judge VV Patil had rejected this argument. He said that Khan knew that co-accused Arbaaz Merchant was carrying narcotic substances in his shoes at the party. Patil said that this amounted to “conscious possession”.