Mumbai: Narcotics Control Bureau’s (NCB) Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede will continue to stay in charge of the Mumbai drugs-on-cruise case unless any substantial piece of information is found against him, said the anti-drug agency’s Deputy Director General (Northern Region) Gyaneshwar Singh. This decision was announced after Wankhede was questioned for about four hours on Wednesday as part of the investigation in connection with the bribery allegations against him and as per reports he put forward “many facts before the team”.
An NCB team, led by Gyaneshwar Singh, arrived in Mumbai on Wednesday to probe allegations of corruption leveled against Wankhede by Prabhakar Sail, a witness in the drugs-on-cruise case. Gyaneshwar Singh told reporters that a five-member inquiry team of NCB on Wednesday started an investigation into allegations levelled by Prabhakar Sail through an affidavit.
“We requested the Southwest region office to get notice served to key witnesses KP Gosavi and Sail but they could not be contacted. Through media, I request them to join the investigation and give evidence before the special enquiry team which is camping at CRPF mess in Bandra, Mumbai,” Singh said.
“Sameer Wankhede was questioned today for about four hours. He put forward many facts before the team. If necessary, more evidence and documents will be sought from him. He submitted case-related documents that were sought. If needed, he will be questioned further. He will remain the investigating officer in the drugs-on-cruise ship case until substantial information is found against him,” Singh added. Sail, a bodyguard of NCB witness Kiran Gosavi, had alleged that Gosavi took Rs 50 lakh from an individual after the raid at the cruise ship. Gosavi has denied the allegations.
Earlier on Monday, NCB named Sail as a “hostile witness” in its affidavit in the court and on Wednesday Mumbai Police appointed an ACP-level officer to investigate the allegations levelled against Sameer Wankhede. “All the complaints received against Wankhede will be probed by the officer. Four Police stations in Mumbai have received such complaints so far,” Mumbai Police said.
On October 2, an NCB team busted an alleged drugs party on the Cordelia Cruise ship which was on its way to Goa and a handful of 20 people including Aryan Khan, son of Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan, was arrested in the case.