An independent witness in the cruise drugs seizure case on Sunday claimed that a Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) official and some other persons demanded Rs 25 crore from Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan to release his son Aryan Khan in the case.
Prabhakar Sail, a witness in the case, told media persons that NCB officials also asked him to sign nine to ten blank papers.
However, a senior NCB official denied the allegations, terming them “completely false and malicious”.
Aryan Khan was arrested on October 3 after NCB zonal director Sameer Wankhede led the agency’s ‘drug bust’ on a cruise ship earlier this month. He is presently lodged in Arthur Road Jail here.
Recently, the Pune Police issued a lookout circular against KP Gosavi, another independent witness of the NCB in the cruise drugs case, for offering jobs to people abroad in a fraud case in 2018.
On Sunday, SAIL alleged that an NCB official, Gosavi and another person named Sam D’Souza had demanded Rs 25 crore from Shah Rukh Khan to release their son.
Affidavit by Prabhakar Sail, witness in a crime case of NCB has come to my notice. As he's witness & case is sub-judice, he needs to submit his prayer to Court rather than social media. Our Zonal Director, Sameer Wankhede has denied the allegations: DDG, South-Western Region, NCB pic.twitter.com/GwdU7AyGCY
SAIL, who is Gosavi’s personal bodyguard and was with him on the night of the raid, said that after Aryan Khan was brought to the NCB office, Gosavi met D’Souza.
SAIL claimed that it heard Gosavi over phone demanding Rs 25 crore from D’Souza and negotiating Rs 18 crore as he would “have to pay Rs 8 crore to Sameer Wankhede”.
The NCB, stating that Wankhede has categorically denied the allegations, also said that since the matter is sub-judice, if it has anything to say, SAIL should have submitted its prayer to the court.
Mumbai NCB Deputy Director General (DDG) Mutha Ashok Jain issued a statement saying that he came to know through social media that SAIL is a witness in the case.
“Since he (SAIL) is a witness in the case and the matter is before the honorable court and is sub judice, if he has anything to say then he needs to submit his prayer in the court instead of social media,” the statement said. .
Further, the affidavit contains certain vigilance charges against some persons, which are based on non-heard by Prabhakar Cell.
“Sameer Wankhede, Zonal Director, Mumbai NCB has categorically denied these allegations. Since some of the contents of the affidavit pertain to vigilance matter, we are forwarding this affidavit to Director General (DG) NCB and requesting him for further necessary action.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra minister and NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik, who has repeatedly termed the cruise drugs bust case as “fake”, said SAIL’s claims were “very serious” and a Special Investigation Team (SIT) will investigate it. demanded inquiry.
Speaking to reporters in Beed, Malik reiterated his allegation of Wankhede’s involvement in “extortion and terrorizing the Mumbai film industry” and said that he will meet the Maharashtra Chief Minister and Home Minister in Mumbai on Monday and will meet with SAIL. Will demand SIT probe into the claims.
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut tweeted, “Shocking to be made a witness by NCB for signing blank paper in Aryan Khan case. Also there are reports that there was a demand for huge amount of money. CM Uddhav Thackeray said that these cases have been made to defame Maharashtra. It seems to be coming true. The police should take suo motu cognizance.”
Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Atul Londhe said SAIL’s allegation corroborated the party’s charge that central agencies were against the opposition parties. He demanded that the Supreme Court take appropriate action against the misuse of the agencies politically.