Aryan Khan, the 23-year-old son of Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan, who was arrested on early Sunday morning for allegedly doing recreational drugs at a party on Goa bound luxury cruise ship Cordelia, may finally be granted bail today.
Aryan was taken off the cruise ship by sleuths of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), and detained under laws “related to possession, consumption and sale of illegal substances”. Initially Aryan was remanded into NCB custody until 7 October.
While in custody, his interrogation led to the arrest of another 17 people allegedly involved in drug trade including one Aachit Kumar and a foreigner.
Yesterday, the NCB sought an extension to his custody citing those arrests and suggesting further digging would lead them to the ‘main accused’.
However Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (in Mumbai) RN Nerlikar refused the application and decided to grant them judicial custody instead until October 14.
Aryan’s lawyer, the celebrity warrior Satish Maneshinde quickly moved the application for bail which will be heard at 12.30 pm Mumbai time.
Under the Indian law, it is extremely difficult to make a successful application for bail while the accused is in NCB.
It is almost certain, given the record so far, that Aryan will come home for dinner tonight.
According to his lawyer Satish Maneshinde,
- Aryan Khan was “screened twice when he boarded the cruise”;
- “no drugs were found on him”; and
- there was “no evidence that he had consumed any drugs”.
This, if true, is strong enough argument to be released from custody although invariably, some conditions are imposed granting bail.
The media coverage, as always is divided downright on both sides. Some claim Aryan should be made an example, others say the arrest is gross violation of the law and a blatant attempt to tarnish Bollywood’s image.
Aryan was photographed and filmed being escorted by the police in and out of buildings, and his “arrest memo” was shown on TV screens and shared widely on WhatsApp.
Aryan 23, along with two others Arbaaz Merchantt 26, and Munmun Dhamecha 39, were among eight people arrested from the cruise ship where a super elite rave party was going to be held.
Some allege it was a connection of Arjun Rampal picked up two weeks earlier for drugs, who while being interrogated tipped police authorities about this ‘super party’ planned on the luxury cruise bound for Goa on October 2.
The media has reported the entry ticket fee was from Rs 80,000 to Rs 8 Lakh to join the party. Obviously ordinary Indians would not be able to afford to be on that ship to party along the high and mighty of Bollywood brigade.
Aryan Khan who has studied abroad at the University of Southern California, has allegedly admitted to have been doing drugs for the last 4 years.