Bengaluru celebrity party planner Viren Khanna, known for his exclusive events that catered to expat crowds in the city, was arrested on Friday in connection with a drug case that also involved actor Ragini Dwivedi. Officers with the Central Crime Branch arrested Viren Khanna in New Delhi and he will be brought back to Bengaluru.
Viren Khanna, was in Delhi over the last few days and a team of CCB travelled to arrest him. He has been taken into police custody for four days. On Friday, the CCB arrested Ragini after more than 7 hours of questioning.
According to Joint Commissioner of Crime Sandeep Patil, his team is focusing on three areas- who procures, who consumes and who organises parties where the drugs are consumed.
Viren was known for organising high-profile parties in Bengaluru, and CCB sources allege that drugs were rampantly used at these events.
"This is a big network of drugs peddling and consumption. There are people like Viren Khanna who organise these high end parties and give a platform for drug consumption. Then there are celebrities and others who go there and consume drugs like the film actress. Then there are drug suppliers like Ravi and Rahul who supply the drugs bought through other drug peddlers, mostly foreigners. We will be arresting all the accused involved in the 3 areas that is organising parties, consumption and peddling," Patil said.
The officer however refused to divulge the exact charges against Viren and said this will be revealed in the remand application submitted in court.
Born and raised in Delhi, 35-year-old Viren Khanna moved to Bengaluru to study and started organising parties right out of college. He soon began his own venture, Viren Khanna Productions, through which he hosted events across the city. Alongside his company, he founded the Bangalore Expats Club, an exclusive group for expats in the city whose members he personally vets before allowing them to join. The clubâs Facebook page, which has almost 30,000 likes, describes itself as, âThe social community of expats and interns living and working in Bangalore city.â
Through Bengaluruâs lavish party scene, which drew the city's biggest socialites, Viren became a well-known face and soon amassed a following.
âWhat happens when a legendary party spot teams up with one of the most happening experience curators in town?â a blog wrote about a party Viren was throwing at Opus in Bengaluru. It wasnât long before he was hosting some of the most exclusive and sought-after parties in the city, primarily for the significant expat community that lived in the city. In a 2014 profile for GQ Magazine, he was dubbed âBengaluruâs King of Expats.â
According to the GQ story, Viren would also often host after parties at his own home, where he would often face multiple noise complaints. The article also noted that Viren had entered into revenue-sharing agreements with star hotels in Bengaluru, and had also partnered with several alcohol brands in the city and brought them in as sponsors for the parties he organised.