Tollywood drug racket: RGV defends Telugu industry, questions probe officer Akun Sabharwal

"Is there a deep rooted conspiracy to target only the film industry?" Ram Gopal Varma asked.
Tollywood drug racket: RGV defends Telugu industry, questions probe officer Akun Sabharwal
Tollywood drug racket: RGV defends Telugu industry, questions probe officer Akun Sabharwal
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Filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma stirred up controversy yet again, after he took to Facebook, to share his views on the sensational drug racket that was busted in Hyderabad last month.

A Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the case, has summoned 12 personalities from the Telugu film industry for questioning.

"I'm wondering if the school children taking drugs will also be summoned by the SIT and interrogated for 12 hours, like they are doing to Puri Jagan and Subba Raju. Of course, everyone knew that it exists, but this is the first time that everyone has heard about this, because the department is using the film industry as a teaser trailer, for people to come to know about its existence," he posted on his official Facebook page on Friday night.

"Whatever the actual truth of the drugs matter is, the law will take its own course and might tell or not tell, but for the moment, Akun Sabharwal is being projected like Amarendra Bahubali by the media. Maybe SS Rajamouli should make Baahubali 3 with him," he added, sarcastically.

Director of Enforcement, Akun Sabharwal, is the IPS officer leading the present investigation.

Taking to Facebook again on Saturday morning, RGV said, "Nobody is denying the integrity of Sabharwal or his department, but even without any charges or conclusive proof, to allow the 'media leaks' to destroy the reputations of people, and causing distress to their families, is highly deplorable."

However, he wasn't done yet. 

Stating that Sabharwal should be 'morally responsible, and put an end to media speculations', RGV went on to add, "Why can't Akun Sabharwal say to the press, that only he is authorised to speak on what's going on, and the rest are nothing, but ill-informed speculations? His silence is making the baseless allegations and non-stop speculations sound like truth, thereby causing tremendous damage to reputations of people."

“The law clearly says that a person is considered innocent until proven guilty and here, just on a mere enquiry, even without a charge or a case filed, people are being projected like criminals. I think it's right for Akun Sabharwal and his team to speak out and make it clear to people not to listen to malicious conspiracies," the filmmaker said.

Varma also claimed that it was made to look, as if drugs were never present before the Telugu film industry's involvement in it. 

"Is there a deep rooted conspiracy to target only the film industry?" he asked.

On Thursday, the SIT questioned cinematographer Shyam K Naidu, a day after grilling director Puri Jagannadh for over 10 hours for his alleged links with the accused.

Actor Subba Raju was grilled by the SIT on Friday, for over 11 hours.

Actors Ravi Teja, Navdeep, Tarun and Nandu, actress Mumait Khan and art director Chinna are among the other celebrities who will be questioned by the SIT.

It was Telugu actor Tarun Kumar's turn on Saturday, and he appeared before the SIT at around 10am.

The filmmaker's comments evoked condemnation from R. Chandravadan, Commissioner, Prohibition and Excise. He said it was unfortunate that some people were making comments which were demoralising for the officials.

Chandravadan said the department had taken the drug racket seriously and was investigating it from all angles within the legal framework. He said the officials were following the Supreme Court guidelines.

The official said that film personalities should act responsibly and added that the investigating team was getting cooperation.

The racket caused a sensation as authorities found that about 1,000 students of leading private schools and colleges in the city were using high-end drugs such as LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) and MDMA (methylenedioxy-methamphetamine).

The SIT has so far arrested 13 persons, including US citizen Dundu Anish -- an aerospace engineer who had earlier worked with the NASA, and seven B.Tech graduates, most of whom were working for multinational companies.

The film personalities are being questioned about any drug dependence or whether they had any links with the accused arrested in the case.

IANS inputs

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