This Article is From Oct 06, 2021

Man In Viral Selfie With Aryan Khan Is... Maharashtra Minister's Claim

Aryan Khan and seven others were arrested on Monday by the Narcotics Control Bureau. Their custody was extended till Thursday by a court.

Questions have been raised over the man in the selfie with Aryan Khan

New Delhi:

The man who took a viral selfie with Shah Rukh Khan's son Aryan Khan after his detention in the Mumbai drugs-on-cruise case is a private investigator, a Maharashtra Minister alleged on Wednesday, questioning how two outsiders were allowed in the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB)'s operation.

Nawab Malik, a senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader, said private detective KP Gosavi is the man seen holding Aryan Khan's hand and leading him to the NCB office on Sunday.

Mr Malik said Manish Bhanushali, a BJP Vice President, was also seen in visuals of the raids. This, he said, proved a BJP hand in "maligning Maharashtra with a fake drug bust".

"Our allegation is that for the last one year the BJP is maligning Maharashtra. They have locked the profiles of Manish Bhanushali and Gosavi. Who was Manish Bhanushali meeting in Delhi and Gujarat? How is he present at an NCB raid? BJP is using NCB to malign Maharashtra," Nawab Malik alleged.

Refuting the allegations, Manish Bhanushali told news agency ANI, "NCP leader Nawab Malik has put wrong allegations against me. BJP has nothing to do with it (the arrests). I received information on October 1 that a drugs party was to be held. I was with the NCB officers (at the ship) for more information."

The anti-drugs agency named both the men as "independent witnesses" to the raids.

"The allegations are baseless. NCB reiterates its procedure has been and continues to be legally and professionally transparent and unbiased," said NCB officer Gyaneshwar Singh.

Aryan Khan, his friend Arbaaz Merchant, and six others were arrested on Monday.

The unknown man's selfie with Aryan Khan, when he appeared to be alone and without legal counsel, first confirmed to the world that the superstar's son had been detained.

The anti-drugs agency, after denying that the smiling selfie-taker was one its men, has now called Gosavi a "panchnama witness" or independent witness to the raids.

In several videos, Mr Bhanushali is seen holding the hand of Arbaaz Merchant as the convoy led by zonal NCB director Sameer Wankhede made its way to the anti-drugs office from the cruise ship after several people were detained Saturday night on allegations of consuming drugs.

The BJP avoided questions on Mr Bhanushali's role and accused the Maharashtra government of politics.

"There will be many issues to do politics on but we should not do politics on drugs issue which concerns the future generations of our country," said Ram Kadam, BJP spokesperson.

After raids on Saturday night on a cruise ship rave party, anti-drugs officers said they had seized 13 grams of cocaine, five grams of MD, 21 grams of charas, and 22 pills of Ecstasy, and Rs 1.33 lakh.

No drugs were found on Aryan Khan. However, the agency told the court that incriminating material was found in his WhatsApp chats.

Investigators yesterday told a court the case had seen twists and turns worthy of Agatha Christie and Sherlock Holmes books.