Mumbai, September 24
Actors Deepika Padukone and Sara Ali Khan have arrived in Mumbai on Thursday after they were summoned by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in a drug case related to the death of Sushant Singh Rajput.
Sara reached Mumbai with her mother, actor Amrita Singh and brother, Ibrahim Ali Khan around 5pm and headed to their suburban Juhu residence.
Khan made her acting debut opposite Rajput in the 2018 film “Kedarnath”.
The NCB, which began the probe after a drugs angle came to light in connection with Rajput’s alleged suicide, has now widened its investigation and called film celebrities for questioning.
Khan is set to appear before the NCB on September 26 (Saturday), along with actors Deepika Padukone and Shraddha Kapoor. Actor Rakul Preet Singh and Padukone’s manager Karishma Prakash are summoned on Friday.
Meanwhile, statements of fashion designer Simone Khambatta and Shruti Modi, Rajput’s former manager, were recorded by the NCB probe team in connection with the drugs case, the official said.
Rajput (34) was found dead in his Bandra apartment on June 14. His death has sparked a lot of controversy in the media and the case is currently being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the NCB.
His girlfriend, actor Rhea Chakraborty, who has been accused of abetting Rajput’s suicide by his family, has been arrested in a drugs case linked to his death.
Padukone has been in Goa for a few days for the shoot of director Shakun Batra’s next film and is likely to return to Mumbai on Thursday night.
— Filmfare (@filmfare) September 24, 2020
Deepika will join the investigation on Friday.
An NCB source told IANS that Deepika’s legal team has informed the probe agency that she will join the investigation on Friday.
The development came a day after the agency issued a summons to Deepika, the daughter of badminton icon Prakash Padukone who is married to Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh, to join the probe after her alleged chats with her manager Karishma Prakash came to the fore during the investigation.
Deepika on Thursday left for Mumbai from Goa, where she was shooting for an upcoming film along with Siddhant Chaturvedi and Ananya Pandey.
Besides Deepika, the agency will also question her manager Karishma.
Summons have also been issued to Bollywood actors Sara Ali Khan, Shradhha Kapoor and Rakul Preet Singh for questioning.
NCB sources said that they all have been summoned after their names surfaced in WhatsApp chats accessed by the NCB and during the questioning of late Bollywood star Sushant Singh Rajput’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty.
The source told IANS that these celebrities will be questioned about how and from whom they procured drugs and whether they were meant for personal consumption or for someone else.
The source further said that while probing the link of the Kwan Talent Management Agency in the case, Deepika’s chats with Karishma surfaced.
Karishma handled Deepika’s account at Kwan till 2017.
The official said that the NCB is presently investigating two separate cases which revolve around the drugs cartel that is active in the tinsel town.
The first case was registered on the directions of the top brass of the NCB after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) forwarded a brief note on Rhea and her brother Showik’s WhatsApp chats.
In its FIR number 15, the NCB claimed, “Analysis of WhatsApp chats of Rhea Chakraborty with other entities reflects the angle of conspiracy and abetment in possession, sale, purchase, consumption, transportation and usage of substances covered under NDPS Act.”
In the second case (FIR number 16), the NCB has so far arrested 19 persons, including Rhea and Showik.
Earlier on Thursday, the NCB recorded the statement of fashion designer Simone Khambatta for over four hours while the grilling of Sushant’s former manager Shruti Modi is still going on.
The NCB has also recorded the statements of Kwan CEO Dhruv Chitgopekar, producer Madhu Mantena Varma and Sushant’s talent manager Jaya Saha.
Sushant was fond dead at his Bandra apartment on June 14. — With agencies