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Sushant Singh Rajput death probe | NCB arrests Rhea Chakraborty in drugs case

Apart from her brother, Sushant’s housekeeping manager Samuel Miranda and staff member Dipesh Sawant have also been arrested in the same case

The bail plea of actor Rhea Chakraborty, who was arrested earlier on Tuesday by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in the Sushant Singh Rajput death case, was rejected late in the evening. Ms Chakraborty was sent to 14 days judicial custody by a magistrate’s court.

Following her arrest, the NCB stated, “It is clear from her statement that she is in an active member of the drug syndicate connected with drug suppliers. It is also clear that she used to procure drugs for Sushant. She used to manage finance for drug procurement along with Sushant.”

While seeking her judicial custody, NCB relied on the statements of late actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s househelp Dipesh Sawant, Ms. Chakraborty’s brother Showik and Sushant’s house manager Samuel Miranda. The arrest comes after Ms Chakraborty was questioned by the NCB for three days since Sunday.

NCB’s remand application seeking Ms Chakraborty’s custody mentioned, “During Ms Chakraborty’s statement on all three days she was confronted on all the accused in the case and facts in their statement was verified. She has acknowledged their statement and her role explained. She revealed her involvement in procurement of drug and financial transaction and also her instructions to Mr. Miranda, Mr Sawant and Mr Chakraborty in this regard.”

During his statement, Mr Miranda disclosed that he used to procure drugs on the direction of Rajput and Ms. Chakraborty and disclosed that financial matter in this regard were being dealt by Ms. Chakraborty and Rajput. Mr Sawant also disclosed that he used to receive drugs along with Mr. Miranda for Rajput on directions of Ms. Chakraborty.

Commenting on Ms. Chakraborty’s arrest, her advocate Satish Maneshinde said, “(This is) a travesty of Justice. Three Central Agencies hounding a single Woman, just because she was in love with a Drug Addict and was suffering from Mental Health issues for several years under the care of five leading psychiatrists in Mumbai, who ended up committing suicide due to consumption of Illegally Administered Medicines and used drugs.”

In a parallel development, the Bandra police in Mumbai registered an FIR charging Rajput’s sisters — Priyanka and Meetu Singh — with abetting their brother’s suicide. The FIR comes less than 12 hours after Ms. Chakraborty filed a complaint against the two women and one Dr. Tarun Kumar, an associate professor of Cardiology of Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, New Delhi, for arranging medicines for Rajput.

Questioned for 3 days

The NCB had first summoned Ms. Chakraborty on Sunday for recording her statement and for the next two consecutive days, she appeared before the investigating team.

Apart from Ms. Chakraborty’s brother, Rajput’s housekeeping manager Samuel Miranda and staff member Dipesh Sawant have also been arrested in the case. They all are currently in NCB custody.

Following his son’s arrest, Ms. Chakraborty father Indrajit Chakraborty had issued a statement to lodge his protest. “Congratulations India, you have arrested my son, I’m sure next on the line is my daughter and I don’t know who is next thereafter. You have effectively demolished a middle-class family. But of course, for the sake of justice everything is justified. Jai hind,” he had said.

Mr. Showik Chakraborty is also an accused in the case being probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation, following a complaint by Rajput’s father alleging abetment to suicide, criminal conspiracy, cheating, breach of trust, theft, wrongful restraint and confinement. He has been examined several times by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate.

On Sunday, the NCB had arrested another alleged drug peddler, Anuj Keshwani, after drugs and cash were seized from him.

Sisters charged

In the FIR filed by the Bandra police, Ms Priyanka and Ms Meetu Singh have been charged with abetment to suicide, cheating and criminal conspiracy.

According to the FIR, accessed by The Hindu, they have been charged under Sections 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 464 (making a false document), 465 (punishment for forgery), 466 (forgery of record of Court or of public register, etc.), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 474 (having possesion of document), 306 (abetment to suicide) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code among others.

Along with this, they have also been booked under Sections 8(1) – prohibition of certain activities relating to property derived from offence, 21 (punishment for contravention in relation to manufactured drugs and preparation), 22 (punishment for contravention in relation to psychotropic substances) and 29 (punishment for abetment and criminal conspiracy) of the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.

The seven-page complaint filed by Ms. Chakraborty earlier with the police station said: “Sushant had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder by multiple renowned doctors. However, he was not disciplined in respect with his treatment and would often abruptly stop taking his medication.”

It went on to mention, “On June 8, 2020, Sushant showed her text messages exchanged with his sister Ms. Singh and she was shocked to read that Ms. Singh had sent him a list of medications to take. She explained to him that going by the seriousness of his condition and that he has been prescribed medicines who have examined him, he should not take any other medication least of all that prescribed by his sister who has no medical degree.”

Ms. Chakraborty said Sushant and she had a disagreement on this and he had said he will only take the medicines prescribed by his sister. He then reportedly told her to leave the house as his other sister Meetu Singh was coming to live with him and would take care of him. “It is shocking to know that Priyanka Singh arranged for prescription for Sushant by one Dr Tarun Kumar. The document appears to be forged and fabricated,” the complaint said.

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