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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Bollywood ‘drug nexus’: Former Dharma Productions employee sent to NCB custody

Senior NCB officials had earlier claimed that Prasad, an Executive Producer at Dharmatic Entertainment – a sister concern of Dharma Productions, a production house owned by Karan Johar – was in touch with major drug peddlers in Mumbai.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: September 27, 2020 3:08:22 pm
bollywood drug nexus, shraddha kapoor drugs, deepika padukone drugs, sara ali khan drugs, dharma productions, dharma productions drugs case, Kshitij Prasad, Kshitij Prasad NCB custodyOn Saturday, Prasad was the 20th person to have been arrested by the agency in connection with the case. (File)

A Mumbai court on Sunday granted the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) custody of former Dharmatic Entertainment executive producer Kshitij Prasad till October 3 in connection with the probe into the purported “drug nexus” in Bollywood.

On Saturday, Prasad was the 20th person to have been arrested by the agency in connection with the case.

Senior NCB officials had earlier claimed that Prasad, an Executive Producer at Dharmatic Entertainment – a sister concern of Dharma Productions, a production house owned by Karan Johar – was in touch with major drug peddlers in Mumbai.

“Some of these peddlers have already been arrested while the others are yet to be caught. Prasad has told us that he used to procure drugs for his own consumption. We are investigating whether he also used to supply those drugs to others,” an official had earlier said.

Also read | NCB detains Dharma employee, Karan Johar slams ‘malicious’ claims

The Dharma employee was arrested in FIR 16/2020 of the NCB’s Mumbai Zonal Unit.

The agency had previously arrested actress Rhea Chakraborty, her brother Showik and 17 others under this FIR and seized small quantities of hashish, LSD dots and marijuana. It later informed the court that it had decided to file a second FIR “to uproot the drug citadel in Mumbai, especially in Bollywood”.

On Saturday, Bollywood actors Deepika Padukone, Shraddha Kapoor and Sara Ali Khan and Padukone’s manager Karishma Prakash for interrogated for over five hours in connection with the case.

“Statements of four people were recorded today. I cannot comment on what they said. Their statements will be submitted to the court,” Mutha Ashok Jain, Deputy Director General, South West Region, NCB, said.

Jain added that the agency will now review the arrests and seizures it has made before deciding who to question next.

“The actresses have denied taking drugs. We may serve them a summons for further questioning if we find new evidence. Their questioning is over for now,” an NCB official said.

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