While Rhea Chakraborty was granted bail by the Bombay High Court on Wednesday, 7 October, her brother Showik, arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in the same drugs case under the NDPS Act, was refused bail by the very same judge.
Showik’s judicial custody had been extended till 20 October – he will therefore be able to apply for bail at a hearing in the special court today. However, to get bail, his lawyers will need to argue around the observations of the Bombay High Court, which had observed that the NCB had prima facie showed that Showik was part of a chain of drug dealers.
Rhea had been arrested by the NCB on 8 September, while Showik had been arrested on 4 September on charges of procurement and consumption of drugs.
Justice Sarang Kotwal held that Showik “was not only knowing many drug dealers, but, he was in touch with them and was actually transacting with them. Thus, he is part of chain of drug dealers. At this stage, the investigating agency has sufficient material to show that he is a part of a chain of drug dealers engaged in illicit traffic of drugs.”
His situation was different from Rhea’s because of this fact, that he was connected to a number of drug dealers who were being investigated by the NCB.
While Rhea had only paid certain sums of money for drugs, allegedly being purchased for Sushant Singh Rajput, Showik was found to be in contact with drug dealers Abdel Basit Parihar, Dwyane, Kaizan, Karamjeet and Suryadeep, and that monetary transactions between them were reflected in his account.
Through two of these drug dealers, Abdel Basit and Kaizan, he was also connected to another drug dealer Anuj Keshwani, from whom a commercial quantity of LSD had been recovered by the NCB.
This connection, to a commercial quantity of drugs, meant that while the court believed that, similar to Rhea’s case, Section 27A of the NDPS Act (financing illicit activities or harbouring an offender) would not apply to him, the bar against bail under Section 37 of the NDPS Act would apply to Showik’s case.
Noting that Showik appeared to be an “important link in the chain of drug dealers” and that considering his involvement with a large network, “it is not possible to observe that he is not likely to commit such offences in future,” the court said.