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Chargesheet spells it out: No drugs, no test, chats that didn’t add up

It said that Merchant, who has been chargesheeted, has not claimed in any of his statements that the 6-gm of charas recovered from his possession was meant for Aryan.

Written by Deeptiman Tiwary | New Delhi |
Updated: May 28, 2022 7:37:41 am
Aryan Khan, Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), Mumbai cruise raid case, Indian Express, India news, current affairs, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India NewsThe chargesheet also detailed how Aryan's mobile phone was unlocked without due procedure.

THE SEIZURE of his mobile phone, how it was unlocked without due procedure, and how “drug chats” referring to a period in 2018 in Los Angeles were misinterpreted are the key factors at the heart of the Narcotics Control Bureau’s clean chit for Aryan Khan in the Mumbai cruise raid case, according to the chargesheet filed by the NCB in a Mumbai court.

The other main reasons in the chargesheet include: no recovery of drugs from him, no medical test conducted to prove consumption, WhatsApp chats not leading to any drug transaction and no witness claiming that he consumed drugs.

“…the mobile phone of Aryan Khan was not formally seized…none of the chats recovered from his phone connect him to the present case. No recovery of drugs from Aryan Khan and non-availability of any concrete evidence, which could prove role of Aryan Khan or his conspiracy with Arbaaz A Merchant or any other accused in the instant case beyond reasonable doubt, surfaced up during the investigation carried so far. Hence, no complaint is being filed against him in the instant case,” the chargesheet stated.

It said that Merchant, who has been chargesheeted, has not claimed in any of his statements that the 6-gm of charas recovered from his possession was meant for Aryan. “In fact, Arbaaz A Merchant…stated that he was warned by Aryan Khan to not carry any Narcotic Drug on to the Cruise,” the chargesheet stated.

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The chargesheet also detailed how Aryan’s mobile phone was unlocked without due procedure. “Aryan further stated that his phone was unlocked at the terminal by his face ID, after his denial to give password of the phone and after opening of phone, his drug chats were shown to him to which Aryan told that these drug chats were from Los Angeles, America,” the chargesheet said, adding that the statements of his friends supported this assertion.

It stated that a creative executive with Shah Rukh Khan’s production Red Chillies Entertainment, identified as Manav Chauhan, told NCB that Aryan once told him “he was into hash and weed smoking while he was in the USA, and has procured it multiple times as it is legal there”.

According to the chargesheet, Aryan did this in 2018 to tackle sleeping disorders and after having read on the Internet that “weed” can help.

It stated that the NCB’s probe also recovered a “drug chat” between Aryan and Bollywood actor Ananya Pandey. “Ananya Pandey, when shown her drug chat held in 2019…told that the chats related to weed were said in jest and it was a joke in an attempt to be funny,” the chargesheet said.

Another chat suggesting a conversation between Aryan and another person identified as Aachit about payment of money in the form of weed, has been discounted by the SIT as the transaction never happened.

According to the chargesheet, Aachit said that he could not repay Aryan as he was under financial strain. “He further told that Aryan Khan offered him to pay the remaining money back in kind (weed). …but he has never supplied him (Aryan Khan) weed,” the chargesheet said.

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The chargesheet has also listed statements of Aryan’s friends on the cruise, including a person identified as Aamir Furniturewala, who said that when they were in the NCB’s office, Merchant came over and apologised for putting them in this situation.

On Avin Sahu, who has also been removed as accused in the case, the chargesheet said that though he confessed to allegedly consuming “ganja” on the cruise, “the absence of medical examination fails to establish consumption…”.

On the four other accused whose names have been dropped, the chargesheet said that “no concrete evidence establishing…role in financing the illicit drug activities on the cruise surfaced up during the course of investigation”.

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First published on: 28-05-2022 at 01:15:43 am
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