In a setback for Kannada actors Ragini Dwivedi and Sanjana Galrani, a special Bengaluru court on Monday denied bail to them in connection with the high-profile Sandalwood drugs case. The bail hearing for the other accused in the case was adjourned. The special Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) court also rejected the anticipatory bail applications filed by two accused in the case, Vinay Kumar and Shiva Prakash, who have evaded arrest till now. The police are also on the lookout for actor Vivek Oberoi’s brother-in-law, Aditya Alva, who has been named in the case.
Police have so far arrested high-profile party planner Viren Khanna, alleged drug peddlers Loum Pepper Samba, Rahul Tonse, Prashanth Ranka and Niyaz in connection with the case.
As reported earlier, even though the Central Crime Branch (CCB) of the Bengaluru police has made high-profile arrests, they might not be able to make a watertight case in absence of material evidence. Sources in the CCB have said that the agency is relying on electronic evidence.
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Other than the probe by the CCB, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is also probing the two actors along with other co-accused on charges of money laundering. Incidentally, the First Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate on Thursday had granted ED permission to probe the charges. Among others, the ED is expected to question Viren Khanna, Sanjjana’s friend and real estate businessman Rahul Tonse, and Ragini’s associate BK Ravi Shankar who are among the arrested in connection with the same case.
Actor Ragini Dwivedi who had initially skipped summons by the Central Crime Branch of Bengaluru police on September 3 was arrested on the next day for allegedly not cooperating with investigation officials, following raids at her residence. Sanjana Galrani, who was also subsequently raided in connection with the same case, was arrested on September 8. After a brief period in police custody, they were sent to judicial custody on September 14.