Sushant Singh Rajput death: NCB probe leads to Pak and drug cartels; Bollywood A-listers under scanner

Sushant Singh Rajput death case: NCB has asked the drug enforcement agencies in the US, the UK, Canada and Australia to identify cocaine suppliers to Mumbai
Sushant Singh Rajput death case: NCB officials, working backwards to identify the source of drugs, have identified a link in Amritsar who will be questioned over the next few days(HT Photo/Pratham Gokhale)
Sushant Singh Rajput death case: NCB officials, working backwards to identify the source of drugs, have identified a link in Amritsar who will be questioned over the next few days(HT Photo/Pratham Gokhale)
Updated on Sep 21, 2020 10:23 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Investigations into the drug angle in film actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death has led the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) to large drug organisations and entities in Amritsar and Pakistan supplying cocaine and other hard drugs to Mumbai, and to Bollywood. While the NCB is working on tracing the backtrail from consumer to peddler to supplier to those controlling the trade, the emerging picture is one that threatens to roil Bollywood with past and present A-listers and others showing up on the radar of the agency.

“We have a fair idea as to who is involved in the Bollywood drug scene and (who the) Mumbai suppliers (are). The evidence is being collected before the consumers of hard drugs including heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine and their suppliers are charged,” said a senior NCB official who is familiar with the investigations in the Sushant Singh Rajput case. The official spoke on the conduct that he is not named.

While a key Amritsar link who is central to the investigation is expected to be summoned this week by NCB, the agency has sought the help of the US, UK, Canada and Australian drug enforcement agencies to unearth suppliers of cocaine to Mumbai. According to information shared by associate agencies, at least 1,200 kilograms of cocaine landed in India in 2018, with 300 kilograms landing in Mumbai alone. The number was discovered by a detailed investigation into a seizure of 55 kg of cocaine in Australia in June 2019; the same organization was behind both. NCB has already registered a case on the basis of the Australian report.

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According to NCB officials, the majority of cocaine lands in India through the Columbia-Brazil-Mozambique route, while other African destinations and the Dubai area are sometimes used as an alternative route. Given that India is the largest producer of potassium permanganate, which is used in processing cocaine, there were even plans by some organizations to set up a cocaine processing unit in the country, these officials added.

With India consuming nearly one ton of heroin every day, associate agencies have also alerted NCB to the possibility of a processing unit in India for Afghan heroin coming through Punjab (from Pakistan) or through the sea route from Gujarat. Pakistan’s deep state has always used drug money for terrorist funding.

While NCB is conducting an intensive investigation into the drug angle of the Sushant Singh Rajput case, the matter needs to be handled carefully, the NCB official cited in the first instance said, with names of drug dealers linked with Maharashtra politicians and companies managing film actors and actresses also coming under the scanner.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Author of Indian Mujahideen: The Enemy Within (2011, Hachette) and Himalayan Face-off: Chinese Assertion and Indian Riposte (2014, Hachette). Awarded K Subrahmanyam Prize for Strategic Studies in 2015 by Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (MP-IDSA) and the 2011 Ben Gurion Prize by Israel.

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Wednesday, June 29, 2022