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Thane ephedrine haul: Mamta says she’s not afraid of investigation

mumbai Updated: Jul 29, 2016 01:36 IST
Arvind Walmiki
Arvind Walmiki
Hindustan Times
Mamta Kulkarni

Facing investigation in the Rs2,000-crore ephedrine haul case, beleaguered Bollywood actor Mamta Kulkarni remained defiant and told HT that she was not afraid of any probe and will return to the country soon.

The starlet did not reveal when she will come back from Kenya, where she has been staying since 1996.

She was named in one of the charge-sheets prepared by the Thane anti-narcotics cell, which is investigating the drug case. A red-corner notice has also been issued againt her. According to the police, Kulkarni was to be named the director of Solapur-based Avon Lifesciences Limited from where the police seized 18.5 tonnes of ephedrine in April.

The actor, who appeared in the films in the 1980s and 90s, rubbished reports that she was married to international druglord Vicky Goswami, a key accused in the drug case, and called him a “well-wisher”.

“I have done meditation for 12 years in Dubai, and besides Hinduism, I have not accepted any religion. I went to Kenya in 1996 where I met Vicky, but he is just my well-wisher. He has never touched me. We never married each other. If the police think otherwise, then ask them to prove our marriage,” Kulkarni told HT from Nairobi and added that she has turned spiritual and sought solace in meditation. She also attended the Kumbh Mela in 2013.

Hitting out at the Thane police for implicating her in the drug case, she alleged that her family has been harassed by investigating officials.

Two days ago, she got a shot in the arm as Jay Mukhi, another key conspirator, retracted his statement that he had met her in Dubai and Kenya. “Mukhi has retracted his statement. I don’t know him and apart from that I have never had a word with him,” she said.

On the Rs2,000-crore money trail, the actor stressed she earned money from her films and not from drugs.

A colleague of Kulkarni said that she had transferred Rs2 crore to her family over a period. “Mamta had bought four flats in Mumbai with her own money in 1994. She sold some of them after the real estate prices appreciated. She has nothing to do with drugs. Only police can only tell why her name is being dragged into the drug case,” the colleague told HT.

Kulkarni claimed that the “waste” ephedrine at Solapur plant lay at the back door and the former owner of the factory did not destroy it due to financial problems. “Later, the Thane police raided the plant and seized the drug,” she said.

A senior police inspector from Thane commissionrate said, “We don’t nurse any personal grudge against the actor. We named her in the charge-sheet after a witness statement about the meetings. In addition, there is no provision for Mukhi to record his statement again. His statement was recorded under special judge and we have evidence to defend our side.”