Sunday 25 October 2020

Bombay HC grants bail to Rhea Chakraborty

Rhea was accused of being "an active member of a drugs syndicate" and financing drugs used by Sushant, her boyfriend

Actor Rhea Chakraborty, arrested in drugs case linked to Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case, was granted bail by the Bombay High Court on 7 October. Her brother Showik Chakraborty’s bail plea was rejected. Rajput’s employees Dipesh Sawant and Samuel Miranda were also granted bail by the court.

Rhea Chakraborty was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) on 8 September. Showik and Samuel Miranda were held by the agency on 4 September.

Rhea’s lawyer Satish Maneshinde had said that the agency’s allegations against the actor were based on one incident on 17 March, when she gave Miranda her credit card and the latter withdrew Rs10,000, allegedly to purchase contraband material for Rajput.

Rhea Chakraborty has been asked to submit ₹ 1 lakh as bond and mark her presence daily at the nearest police station for 10 days after her release. She has to hand over her passport and cannot travel abroad without the court’s permission.

“The arrest and custody of Rhea was totally unwarranted and beyond the reach of law. The hounding and witch-hunt by three central agencies, the CBI, Enforcement Directorate and the Narcotics Control Bureau should come to an end. We remain committed to truth. Satyameva Jayate,” Maneshinde said.

She was accused of being “an active member of a drugs syndicate” and financing drugs used by Sushant Singh Rajput, her boyfriend.

In her bail petition, Rhea Chakraborty had said that she and her brother were sole targets of a witch-hunt by multiple agencies who had found no evidence incriminating her in the case.

She had alleged that Sushant Singh Rajput “took advantage of those closest to him to sustain his drug habit” and that she had tried to rid him of it. She also said he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and his family abandoned him at the peak of his depression. His mental health “deteriorated during the lockdown”, she claimed, adding that the deaths of actors Irrfan Khan and Rishi Kapoor also had a tremendous impact on him.

Sushant Singh was “extremely happy after being offered ₹ 14 crore for a movie”, Rhea Chakraborty’s bail plea said, alleging that the actor was disturbed over a rift with his family, especially his father.

Rhea Chakraborty also argued that the charges against her were too severe compared to the quantity of the drugs involved. She accused the drugs probe agency of spinning a false narrative that she was involved in illegal drugs trafficking and “harboured offenders”.

The CBI is investigating the circumstances of Sushant Singh Rajput’s death and the Enforcement Directorate is looking into financial allegations raised by the actor’s father.

The Narcotics Control Bureau stepped into the Sushant Singh Rajput investigations when WhatsApp chats retrieved from Rhea Chakraborty’s phone revealed alleged conversations involving the procuring of drugs.

Several top actors have been questioned by the anti-drugs bureau in a widening probe into drugs and the film industry.

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