- NCB stated that their team found ‘shocking and incriminating’ material in the WhatsApp chats of Aryan Khan, Merchant, and Dhamecha
- Anil Singh, appearing for the NCB stated that all the accused needs to be confronted with each other
- Satish Maneshinde, Aryan Khan’s advocate argued that his client had no criminal antecedents
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has got the custody of Aryan Khan, son of Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan, and two other accused arrested for alleged drug abuse onboard a cruise ship till Thursday. In the hearing, the NCB stated that their team found ‘shocking and incriminating’ material in the WhatsApp chats of Aryan Khan, Merchant, and Dhamecha (two other accused). “The chats clearly show international drug trafficking. In addition, Aryan also discussed modes of payment for procurement of drugs,” it said.
Addressing the court, the NCB revealed that several code names were used. Referring to this new development, additional solicitor general Anil Singh, appearing for the NCB stated that all the accused needs to be confronted with each other, and the international transactions need to be investigated. Singh also mentioned that a supplier from Juhu has been arrested by the NCB.
While the sections under which the accused have been booked are bailable, the court has to consider the purpose of the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS) which is to remove the drug menace from society, while hearing remand applications or granting bail.
Singh mentioned that one cannot claim bail as the number of drugs found was little. “Consuming drugs has nowadays become very common with even college-going kids consuming them. The accused here are high profile persons who are considered as role models by regular persons,” the NCB counsel said.
Responding to Singh, Satish Maneshinde, Aryan Khan’s advocate opposed the extension of custody sought by the NCB and argued that his client had no criminal antecedents. Satish also claimed no drugs were recovered from his client’s possession. “Aryan Khan was invited to the cruise along with his friend Merchant and he had not paid any money to get on the ship,” Satish added.
On Sunday, the NCB arrested Aryan Khan, Arbaaz Merchant, and Munmun Dhamecha. All the three have been booked under sections 8(c) (produce, manufacture, possess, sell or purchase of drugs), 20(b) (punishment for contravention of cannabis), 27 (punishment for consumption of any narcotics or drugs) along with section 35 of the NDPS act.