The Narcotics Control Bureau detained an additional eight people after searching a cruise ship on its return to Mumbai, two days after a drugs party onboard the vessel was busted.

File photo of Aryan Khan with parents Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri KhanFile photo
news Court Monday, October 04, 2021 - 18:01

A Mumbai court on Monday, October 4, sent actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan to custody of the Narcotics Control Bureau till October 7. The court, after hearing arguments from both sides, said investigation is of prime importance and NCB custody is ‘necessary.’ Earlier, Aryan Khan’s counsel had told the court that there was no evidence that he was in possession of or had consumed any drugs. Additional Solicitor General, appearing for the NCB, told the court that the NCB has seized 13 grams of cocaine, 5 grams of MD (mephedrone), 21 grams of charas, 22 pills of MDMA (ecstasy) and Rs 1.33 lakh at International Cruise Terminal, Mumbai, reported Bar and Bench. He also told the court that “shocking and incriminating material” has been found from Aryan’s phone and hence NCB custody was required. 

Since offenses under the NDPS Act, under which Aryan Khan has been charged, are non-bailable, the question before court was under whose custody Aryan would remain. Aryan’s counsel told the court that he has been cooperating in the probe so far and reiterated that no substance has been found on his person for him to be implicated in the case. 

The court, along with Aryan, has also remanded two others — Munmun Dhamecha and Arbaaz Merchant — to NCB custody till October 7. The other five accused, whose custody also came up for hearing, were also sent to NCB custody till October 7.

Eight more people detained

On Monday, the Narcotics Control Bureau detained eight people after searching a cruise ship on its return to Mumbai from Goa, two days after a drugs party onboard the vessel was busted off the city coast, an NCB official said. The NCB also found some documents and some material, suspected to be drugs, after an over six-hour-long search onboard the ship, the official said, without divulging any further details.

The anti-drugs agency had on Saturday evening busted a drugs party on board the ship, a Cordelia Cruises ship, and arrested Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan's son Aryan Khan and seven others, including two women. 

On Monday, the NCB got information of the ship’s return to the city after two days. Hence, NCB officials including its zonal director Sameer Wankhede reached the cruise terminal and conducted searches onboard the vessel, the official said. The sleuths subsequently detained eight people and the latter were seen with travelling bags in their hands while they were being brought from the ship to the NCB's office here.

After conducting searches, the NCB is likely to record the statement of the cruise ship manager and owner, the official said.

During the raid on Saturday, over 20 officials of the Mumbai NCB had boarded the ship posing as customers. There were 1,800 people on the ship, but after checking all were asked to go except the eight, including Aryan Khan, the official said.

The anti-drugs agency had kept a close watch on the cruise ship event for 15-20 days after receiving information that a drug party would be organised. After confirmation, the NCB conducted the raid on Saturday, officials earlier said.

They had said the NCB may question officials of Delhi-based event management company Namas'cray, registered as Caneplus Trading Private Limited, and officials of the cruise company, Cordelia Cruises.

The (Delhi-based) firm was tasked with the management of the event onboard Cordelia Cruises' Empress ship, which was supposed to take place from October 2 to October 4.

All known organisers of the event are now under the scanner of the NCB, an official of the anti-drug agency earlier said. The cruise company in a statement on Sunday said that it had nothing to do with the incident.

With PTI inputs

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