The Mumbai Special NDPS court, which was hearing the bail plea of Aryan Khan, Arbaaz Merchant and Munmum Dhamecha in the contraband seizure case, reserved its order for 20 October. The court will pronounce its order on Aryan Khan’s bail plea that day.
During the court hearing, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) said that Aryan Khan had been involved in illicit drug trafficking, procuring and distribution of drugs.
Today was the second day of hearing of the bail plea filed by Khan and others arrested by the NCB. The court had yesterday adjourned the hearing for today.
After hearing extensive arguments of the investigating agency and defence lawyers today, special judge VV Patil posted the matter for orders for 20 October.
Earlier today, in his final submission to the special court, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Anil Singh had argued that when considering a case under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, the scheme and the object of the act must be taken into consideration. “When we are considering a case under an NDPS act, the scheme and the object of the act must be taken into consideration…because it`s affecting the nation. From time to time straight action is taken. NCB is working day and night and dealing with drugs in serious manners,” said the ASG.
Singh said that there was evidence to show that Khan was a regular consumer of drugs for the last few years. He also reiterated the charge of conspiracy against Aryan, based on his WhatsApp chats.
“Four to five of my officers were beaten a few days ago not in this case but another one; so I am saying it is affecting society and college students in particular. The younger generation is the future of the country. It’s the land of Mahatma Gandhi, we should stop the circulation of the drug. We are looking into the chain, transition. We are in the preliminary stage and it’s a case of conspiracy we are investigating,” he said.
Since his arrest, the NCB has maintained that though nothing was recovered from him personally, Aryan’s WhatsApp chats revealed his links with drug peddlers.
The ASG further contended that drugs were seized from Merchant at the docks, and they were meant for consumption by both Aryan and him. The NCB has also been claiming that Aryan was in contact with members of an international drug racket.
Khan’s lawyer Amit Desai said the NCB was pointing to an international trafficking racket, but if the consumer states from where he procured drugs, then “the chain is complete”.
Desai said the NCB itself had alleged that Aryan disclosed the name of Achit Kumar, another arrested accused. He said the agency can continue the probe, but the allegation of links to international racket against Aryan is “inherently absurd and false”.
“I don’t think there can be a debate that the entire world is fighting the drug menace. We got our freedom and we must protect it and save the younger generation from the drug menace,” the lawyer said.
The NCB in its reply filed in the court on Wednesday said that its investigation has revealed Aryan Khan’s role in illicit procurement and distribution of contraband. It further said that Aryan Khan used to procure drugs from Arbaaz Merchant.
Six grams of Charas was found from the Arbaaz Merchant during the raid by the NCB. “Investigation has revealed accused number 1 (Aryan Khan’s) role in the illicit prominent and distribution of contraband,” said NCB in its reply.
“It is also revealed in the investigation that accused number 1 (Aryan) used to procure drugs from accused number 2 (Arbaaz Merchant) and people connected to Arbaaz. Six gram of charas was removed from the accused number 2 from his shoes during the raid by NCB,” said NCB.
“Accused numbers 1 and 2 are associated and worked in close collaborations so the offences are attracted against them especially section 29 of the NDPS Act (Criminal Conspiracy to commit an offence),” added the reply.
Earlier in the day, Aryan Khan was shifted to the common cell of the Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail after his Covid report came negative. He earlier lodged at the quarantine barrack of the Arthur Road Jail.
A total of 20 people, including two Nigerian nationals, have been arrested so far in the case related to the seizure of drugs following a raid at a party on the Cordelia cruise ship off the Mumbai coast on 2 October.
Earlier, a magistrate’s court had rejected the bail pleas of Aryan Khan, Munmun Dhamecha and Arbaaz Merchant. The three were among those arrested from the Goa-bound cruise ship on 3 October.