The Narcotics Control Bureau in its draft charges filed in the drug case linked to actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death has claimed actor Rhea Chakraborty received multiple deliveries of ganja from the co-accused, including her brother Showik, and these were handed over to Rajput. The Central anti-drug agency had filed the draft charges last month in the Special Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS) Court against 35 accused, the details of which were made available on Tuesday.
As per the draft charges, all the accused entered into criminal conspiracy between March 2020 and December that year with each other or in groups to procure, purchase, sell and distribute drugs in “high society and Bollywood”. It also said the accused had financed drug trafficking and consumed ganja, charas, cocaine and other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances without valid licence, permit or authorization within the Mumbai Metropolitan region. Therefore, they have been charged under relevant provisions of the NDPS Act, including sections 27 and 27 A (financing illicit traffic and harbouring offenders) 28 (punishment for attempts to commit offences), 29 (whoever abets, or is a party to a criminal conspiracy), as per the draft charges.
The draft charges maintained that “accused number 10 Rhea Chakroborty received many deliveries of ganja from accused Samuel Miranda, Showik, Dipesh Sawant and others and handed over those deliveries to the late actor Sushant Singh Rajput”. She made payments for those deliveries at the instance of Showik and the late actor between March 2020 and September that year, it added. As per the draft charges, Rhea’s brother Showik was in regular touch with drug peddlers and had received many deliveries from co-accused after placing orders of ganja and hashish/charas. These deliveries were handed over to Rajput.
The filing of draft charges sets the tone for the framing of charges, following which the trial begins. However, before framing of charges, the court will have to first decide on the discharge pleas of the accused. Until now, four persons, including Kshitij Prasad, former executive producer of Dharmatic Entertainment, have filed for discharge in the case. Prasad, in his plea filed through advocate Nikhil Maneshinde, claimed he is innocent and that there was no prima facie material to sustain the charges against him. The applicant has been needlessly roped into the present proceedings in a mala fide manner by the NCB. Prasad’s plea added. Special Judge V G Raghuwanshi, hearing cases pertaining to Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, has posted the matter for hearing on July 27.
Chakraborty was arrested in the case in September 2020 and was granted bail by the Bombay High Court a month later. Besides Rhea, her brother Showik Chakraborty and several others are also arraigned as accused in the case, with most of them currently out on bail.
The NCB began its probe into alleged drug use in the film and television industry following the death of Rajput on June 14, 2020.