Maharashtra government on Thursday beefed up security of NCP minister Nawab Malik after he claimed that he has been getting threats following his “expose" on the Mumbai drug bust case, which led to arrest of Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan‘s son Aryan.
Officials said that Malik will now get a pilot car, four armed police personnel to travel with him and four policemen to be stationed at home. Malik has been on an offensive against the NCB and the Bharatiya Janata Party. He alleged that the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) let off a relative of a Mumbai BJP leader during the cruise raid.
“One of the persons detained on the cruise was Rishabh Sachdev, but he was immediately released by the Narcotics Control Bureau. Rishabh Sachdev, Pratik Gaba, and Amir Furniturewala were let off… Rishabh is the brother-in-law of BJP leader Mohit Kambhoj," the NCP minister was quoted by news channels.
He also dubbed the cruise ship raid as “fake". The leader had earlier questioned the presence of two persons along with the NCB team.
“One of them is Manish Bhanushali, who claims to be a BJP office-bearer and the other is KP Gosawi, who claims to be a private detective," said Malik at a press conference in Mumbai. Photographs of Gosawi, posing with Khan, went viral a few days ago.
“According to the Bhanushali’s Facebook profile, he is a BJP vice president and has photos with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union home minister Amit Shah, BJP chief JP Nadda and other senior leaders including those from Maharashtra such as Devendra Fadnavis and Ashish Shelar," Malik had told reporters.
The beefing up of security also comes after a special court granted bail to the NCP minister’s son-in-law in a drug case. The court said that the quantum of contraband seized as per the chemical analysis report was not a ‘commercial’ quantity and the charges of abetment and conspiracy made out by the Narcotics Control Bureau do not apply.
According to a report by Times of India, the court also pointed out that there was “nothing except the statement of the accused and the co-accused" to link them with contraband.
The NCB had arrested Sameer Khan in July 2021 alleging he invested funds in drug trafficking along with arrested British national, Karan Sejnani. A chargesheet was filed before the special court. Hearing Khan’s bail application, the court released him in September. The order was released to the media on Tuesday.
Addressing a press conference on Thursday, the NCP leader said that it is surprising that an agency like the NCB cannot differentiate between drugs which fall under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act and tobacco-related items. “It (NCB) said ganja was seized (in the case involving Sameer Khan), but there was none. I just had to make things clear today after the bail order, since the BJP was targeting me over my son-in-law when I raised issues about the NCB’s fake case of the cruise drug party," the NCP leader said. Malik also claimed his family faced trauma and stigma due to the NCB.