Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Bollywood superstar’s son gets bail on drug case

NEW DELHI (AP) – An Indian court on Thursday released the son of Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan on bail in a high-profile drug case that put the actor at the center of a social media boycott campaign.

The Bombay High Court said it will issue a detailed order to release Arian Khan on bail on Friday, which means he is expected to spend another night in jail.

Khan, 23, and seven others were detained on October 3 when Indian anti-narcotics agents raided a party and seized drugs on a luxury cruise ship off the coast of Mumbai. He has been held at Arthur Road Prison in Mumbai since 8 October.

The case has been going on for three weeks now, and the Indian Drug Enforcement Agency says it has evidence in the form of WhatsApp messages that Khan was involved in the illegal drug trade.

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On Thursday, lawyer Anil Singh, who represented the agency, told the court that Khan had a history of drug use and had contact with hawkers.

Speaking on behalf of Khan, lawyer Mukul Rohatgi told the court that the agency had not found any drugs on Khan at the time of his arrest, and the allegations that he had contact with drug dealers were untrue. Rohatgi called Khan’s arrest “arbitrary,” adding that the agency did not conduct a medical examination to show that he used drugs.

The agency last week opposed Khan’s request for bail for the second time, saying it would affect their investigation as he could tamper evidence and influence witnesses.

It has been in the headlines for several weeks and has split India’s social media, with fans demanding Khan’s release and others calling for a boycott of his father’s films.

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On Twitter, Khan and his father’s name was trending along with the hashtag #BollywoodDruggies. The freethinking news channels in India also covered the case everywhere, and many of them sided with the anti-narcotics agency.

Shah Rukh Khan did not make official statements, but many Bollywood stars came to his side.

The 55-year-old is India’s favorite star and is known as the “King of Bollywood”. He has starred in over 105 films in nearly three decades.

Last September, some of Bollywood’s most famous stars were questioned by the anti-narcotics agency over the death of famous actor Sushant Singh Rajput. The Rajput committed suicide, and the doctors and police ruled out drugs.

Nation World News Desk
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