New Delhi, India – The arrest of Bollywood celebrity Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan in a drug case following a raid on a luxurious cruise ship earlier this month has been making headlines in India for almost two weeks now.
Aryan, 23, and 7 others have been detained on October 2 when officers from India’s Narcotics Management Bureau (NCB) – tasked with combatting drug trafficking and using unlawful substances – raided the get together and reportedly seized medication on the cruise ship off the Mumbai coast. The eight accused have been formally arrested a day later.
Since then, a complete of 20 folks have been arrested within the case after the NCB claimed to have made a seizure of 13 grams of cocaine, 5 grams of MD (mephedrone), 21 grams of charas, 22 capsules of MDMA (ecstasy), and 133,000 Indian rupees ($1,766) in money from the cruise ship certain for Goa.
Aryan was current on the ship however his legal professionals stated no medication have been recovered from him.
On Thursday, a particular Mumbai courtroom reserved its order on his bail plea till October 20 and despatched him to a standard cell of Mumbai’s Arthur Street Jail.
The case has triggered allegations that the right-wing Indian authorities was “harassing” the son of the nation’s greatest Muslim actor solely due to their faith.
— Swara Bhasker (@ReallySwara) October 14, 2021
What are the costs towards Aryan Khan?
The NCB has charged Aryan with offences below numerous sections of the Narcotic Medicine and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS), a regulation associated to the possession, consumption and buy of medicine.
Showing for the NCB, Further Solicitor Basic (ASG) Anil Singh on Thursday claimed there was proof to indicate that Aryan was a daily client of medicine for the previous few years.
As of late in India you’re arrested and jailed for who you’re. Not for what you have got finished.
On Wednesday the NCB, in its assertion filed earlier than the courtroom, alleged that Aryan’s WhatsApp chats revealed he was in contact with some individuals who seem like a “a part of a global drug community for illicit procurement of medicine”.
“WhatsApp chats reveal the accused was in contact with a overseas nationwide for a bulk amount of onerous medication,” the assertion stated, including that the probe to date has revealed Aryan’s function within the conspiracy.
The company opposed his bail plea, saying it might have an effect on their investigation as he may “tamper with proof and affect witnesses”.
I’ve stated little on the #AryanKhan matter, in case NCB had proof not leaked to date. Bail hearings clarify that his blood exams have been clear, solely allegation’s based mostly on straws like membership of a whatsapp group. Both NCB made a mistake,is overlaying up, or this can be a vendetta.
— Karuna Nundy (@karunanundy) October 13, 2021
Aryan’s legal professionals reject the costs and time period the NCB allegations as “absurd” and “false”.
Satish Maneshinde final week instructed the courtroom that the narcotics company didn’t discover any medication on him and allegations that he was involved with drug sellers have been unfaithful.
Amit Desai, one other counsel for Aryan, on Wednesday stated there was a “very horrifying and critical time period” which they’re dumping on Khan of “illicit drug trafficking”.
“There may be nothing even remotely suggesting that this boy is concerned in illicit drug trafficking,” he stated, in response to Indian media stories.
Desai later instructed the courtroom that it wants to keep in mind that “by no stretch of the creativeness is that this boy concerned in worldwide drug trafficking”.
NCB faces warmth over arrest
The NCB has confronted warmth from a number of quarters on Aryan’s arrest, together with the ruling coalition made up of the Nationalist Congress Social gathering (NCP), the Shiv Sena and the Congress in Maharashtra state, the place Mumbai is positioned.
Narcotics Management Bureau investigation
No proof of :
Responsible until confirmed harmless
Consideration efficiently diverted from Ashish 𝐌𝐢𝐬𝐡𝐫𝐚 ( Lakhimpur Kheri )
— Kapil Sibal (@KapilSibal) October 15, 2021
Senior NCP chief and minister Nawab Malik final week alleged that the company’s raid on the cruise ship was “pretend” and no narcotics have been discovered in the course of the motion.
Malik additionally questioned the presence of two individuals who participated within the raid regardless of not being the members of the NCB. The politician alleged that certainly one of them was a member of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Social gathering (BJP).
On Wednesday, Malik alleged the “NCB has malafide intentions and is concerned in solely selective leaks to border folks”.
The NCB’s zonal director, Sameer Wankhede, who’s heading the probe into the case, denied the allegations, saying the company works impartially.
“We’re an neutral and a really competent company. We don’t imagine no matter they’re saying. We’re 100% dedicated to combating the crime and we’ll struggle it,” he instructed Al Jazeera.
Wankhede claimed there are folks “who’re attempting to place obstacles in our manner” however that won’t cease them from “doing their responsibility”.
‘King of Bollywood’
Aryan Khan’s father, 55-year-old Shah Rukh Khan, is likely one of the world’s most well-known actors and is popularly known as the “King of Bollywood” or “King Khan”.
In his profession spanning greater than 30 years, Shah Rukh has starred in almost 105 movies, a few of them mega blockbusters and international successes.
The actor, who has a steady marriage along with his childhood sweetheart, a Hindu named Gauri Khan, enjoys a big fan following throughout South Asia, and has greater than 42 million followers on Twitter, an equal quantity on Fb, and almost 27 million on Instagram.
He additionally owns the Kolkata Knight Riders crew, which performs for the Indian Premier League (IPL), the world’s richest cricket competitors.
The pettiness and vendetta can’t take away from the truth that @iamsrk is the largest celebrity of our instances and can stay so. There is not going to be one other Shahrukh Khan within the historical past of Indian cinema.
— Rohini Singh (@rohini_sgh) October 11, 2021
Regardless of his Muslim identification, Shah Rukh has largely loved a non-controversial movie profession. Lately, nevertheless, he has confronted the ire of the right-wing BJP.
In 2015, shortly after Modi got here to energy, the actor was dubbed “anti-national” by the BJP after he spoke towards rising spiritual intolerance within the nation.
Yogi Adityanath, the saffron-robed chief minister of India’s most populous Uttar Pradesh state, as soon as in contrast Shah Rukh with Pakistan’s Hafiz Saeed, thought-about to be the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai assaults and a United Nations-designated terrorist.
Specialists say the medication case involving his son has as soon as once more shone the highlight on the vulnerability of a Muslim actor in India.
However the high-profile case has additionally divided social media in India, with followers of the actor demanding Aryan’s launch quickly whereas others are demanding a boycott of his father’s upcoming movies.
Since his arrest, hashtags similar to #ReleaseAryanKhan, #WeStandWithSRK, #BailForAryanKhan and #WeLoveYouSRK have been trending on Indian social media in help of Shah Rukh Khan and his son.
These opposing the bail have used the hashtags #NoBailOnlyJail and #SendAryanKhanToJail. Some have even began a marketing campaign asking folks to boycott the manufacturers endorsed by Shah Rukh, utilizing hashtags similar to #Boycott_SRK_Related_Brands and #BoycottShahRukhKhan.
A number one education-tech firm, Byju’s, stopped all its commercials that includes the actor.
Lately, Bollywood has been dogged by allegations of widespread drug abuse and a number of other actors have been linked to medication instances.
Final yr, the trade was on the centre of a serious controversy over the loss of life of younger actor Sushant Singh Rajput, who allegedly died by suicide following a historical past of narcotics abuse.
‘Jailed for who you’re’
Whereas a number of Bollywood actors have come out in help of Shah Rukh and his son, the silence of a few of its greatest stars has additionally been slammed by his followers and social media customers.
Veteran actor and politician Shatrugan Sinha stated Aryan was being “focused” due to his father, although he dominated out any spiritual angle to the arrest.
“Shah Rukh is certainly the rationale why the boy is being focused. There are different names like Munmun Dhamecha and Arbaaz Service provider, however no person is speaking about them,” Sinha instructed an Indian web site, including that some folks need to “settle private scores” with the celebrity.
Mehbooba Mufti, the previous chief minister of Indian-administered Kashmir, alleged that India’s federal businesses are “after the 23-year-old just because his surname occurs to be Khan”.
“Travesty of justice that Muslims are focused to satiate the sadistic needs of BJPs core vote financial institution,” she wrote on Twitter.
Activist and Booker prize-winning writer Arundhati Roy additionally hinted on the spiritual identification of an individual deciding what course the regulation would absorb modern India.
“As of late in India you’re arrested and jailed for who you’re. Not for what you have got finished,” she instructed Al Jazeera.