Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan's son Aryan Khan made "soul-searching queries" to the lead investigator on the drugs case against him while the actor disclosed how his son had trouble sleeping at night because of the public trial, the India Today magazine has reported in the first comments by the family on the eight-month ordeal.
The report, based on an interview with Sanjay Singh, the senior Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) officer who headed the probe, said that the investigator did not expect the questions Aryan Khan asked him.
Mr Singh said that after he told Aryan Khan that he had come with "an open mind", the 24-year-old asked, "Sir, you have painted me as an international drug trafficker, that I finance drug trafficking - aren't these charges absurd?"
"They did not find any drugs on my person that day, and yet they arrested me. Sir, you have done me great wrong and ruined my reputation. Why did I have to spend so many weeks in jail - did I really deserve it?" Aryan Khan reportedly asked.
When the officer later met Aryan Khan's father, Shah Rukh Khan, the actor said he was concerned about his son's mental health.
Shah Rukh Khan told him that Aryan Khan was not sleeping well, and he had to keep him company through the night, the magazine reported.
The superstar also said that his son was "being vilified" even though there was no substantial evidence against him.
Almost in tears, Shah Rukh Khan told Sanjay Singh, "We have been painted as some kind of big criminals or monsters who are out to destroy society, and we find it going to work tough every day."
Eight months after a raid on a cruise ship off the coast of Mumbai that ended in his arrest and more than three weeks in jail, Aryan Khan was cleared of all charges by the NCB last month because of a lack of sufficient evidence.
The outcome was a huge embarrassment for the agency, which found one of its officers Sameer Wankhede, who initially led the investigation, was "motivated to somehow implicate Aryan Khan". The agency has since ordered action against Mr Wankhede.