Aryan Khan case: As CBI books Sameer Wankhede, here's all you need to know

In Aryan Khan case, CBI FIR cites conspiracy to extort money from Shah Rukh Khan

BS Web Team New Delhi
Drugs case: NCB, Sameer Wankhede move court against extortion allegations

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According to the FIR filed by the CBI against ex-narcotics official Sameer Wankhede, Shah Rukh Khan was threatened that his son Aryan would be framed in a narcotics case unless he paid Rs 25 crore.
Wankhede who lead the Narcotics Control Bureau in Mumbai at the time of Aryan Khan's arrest and was transferred to the Directorate General of Taxpayer Services in Chennai in May last year.

Wankhede was caught in a web of controversies after the arrest of Aryan Khan and others in an alleged drug bust on a cruise ship off Mumbai in October 2021 and is now facing allegations of corruption and criminal misconduct.

Sameer Wankhede is accused of engaging in buying and selling expensive watches without disclosing this information. He also allegedly concealed details of his expenses during his foreign trips, the FIR states, according to media reports.

Inquiries into the allegations against Wankhede and then intelligence officer with Narcotics Control Bureau Ashish Ranjan, "could not sufficiently justify their acquired assets as per their declared income", the FIR states. Wankhede, the FIR adds, has "not properly explained his foreign visits and had apparently mis-declared the expenditure on his foreign travels".

The FIR names four accused other than Wankhede- Vishwa Vijay Singh and Ashish Ranjan, then senior officers with the NCB, and NCB witnesses KP Gosavi and his aide Sanville D'Souza.

In the FIR, the CBI mentioned that while some individuals caught on the cruise were released, Aryan Khan was arrested. The FIR mentions that Gosavi, who appeared as an NCB official, was responsible for Aryan Khan's arrest.

The FIR notes that Gosavi "was allowed to be present in the company of accused persons and even allowed to come to the NCB office after the raid which is against the norms for an independent witness".

A demand for Rs 25 crore from the family members of Aryan Khan was made by threatening them with accusations. This amount was finally settled down to Rs 18 crore. A token amount of Rs 50 lakhs was initially taken by KP Gosavi but later a part of this amount was returned due to the case getting stuck, the FIR says.

NCP leader Nawab Malik, currently in jail on corruption charges had made many of these allegations earlier.

 What Wankhede said after the CBI raid

The CBI had conducted searches at the Wankhede’s premises on Friday.  After the CBI raids at his home, Wankhede said he "was being punished for being a patriot". "I am getting rewarded for being a patriot, yesterday 18 CBI officials raided my residence and searched it for more than 12 hours while my wife and children were present in the house. They found Rs 23,000 and four property papers. These assets were acquired before I joined the service," he said.

 The CBI has sent Wankhede’s phone to a forensic lab to retrieve data. A team of specialists has been assigned this task.

What happened to Aryan Khan after his arrest
Aryan Khan spent 22 days in jail before the NCB cleared him, citing a “lack of sufficient evidence”.  Afterward, a separate investigation began into the allegations against Wankhede.

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First Published: May 15 2023 | 8:51 PM IST

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